The role of veterinary and medical personnel in the control of zoonoses in urban settlements on the shores of Lake Victoria, Kenya
Kagira, John M
Kanyari, Paul W. N
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Rapid urbanization and livestock keeping in urban and periurban areas especially in the developing countries pose great challenges to the management of human and animal health. The role played by relevant stakeholders in the control of zoonoses in urban areas has not been well evaluated. A questionnaire survey was undertaken in Kisumu municipality, Kenya, to assess the common zoonoses encountered, their management and role played by veterinary and medical personnel in zoonoses control. Fifteen veterinary and nine medical personnel participated in the study. The main zoonoses encountered by the personnel included rabies, brucellosis, hydatidosis, cysticercosis and toxoplasmosis. A significantly (p<0.05) higher number of veterinary than medical personnel reported hydatidosis, cysticercosis and rabies as being more common. The opposite was true for toxoplasmosis. The animals with the highest zoonoses risks according to the veterinary and medical personnel were dogs (71%) and cattle (78%) respectively. There were a significantly higher (p<0.05) proportion of medical (88%) than veterinary personnel (73%) who gave advice to immune-compromised patients regarding the zoonotic risks. Minimal communication existed between the two professions regarding zoonoses occurrence and control. In conclusion, the study found that there were differences on the perception on the occurrence and control of zoonoses in the municipality. It is recommended that an inter-disciplinary approach should be used for the control of zoonoses in the study area.