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Status Of Awareness Among Zoo Workers About Zoonotic Diseases

By: Tahir Khan (2012-VA-806) | Prof. Dr. Mansur Ud Din Ahmed.
Contributor(s): Shelly Saima Yaqub | Dr. Shakera Sadiq Gill | Prof. Dr. Aftab Ahmad Anjum.
Material type: materialTypeLabelBookPublisher: 2014Description: 47p.Subject(s): Department of Epidemiology and Public HealthDDC classification: 2229-T Dissertation note: A zoo is a place where wild animals are kept for exhibition purposes to the public.It includes: aquaria, sanctuaries, bird gardens and safari/wildlife parks. These are centers for wild animal’sconservation and for public recreation and education (Cuaron2005). Epidemiologists, wildlife biologists, veterinarians and conservationists used these for research purpose.According to an estimate Pakistan is maintainingapproximately 27 zoos, deer parks, etc.(Walker 2014). Zoonotic diseases are those which are naturally transmitted from animals to human beings and vice versa. The word Zoonosis is derived from the Greek word zoon (animal) and nosos (disease). The diseases which are transferred from human beings to animals are known as Zooanthroponotic (Greek “Zoon” = animal, “anthrópos” = man, “nosos” = disease) diseases e.g. tuberculosis, measles, giardiasis and amoebiasis. On the other hand the diseases which are transmitted from animals to human beings are known as anthropozoonotic diseases e.g. anthrax, AIDS, psittacosis and rabies (Epstein and Price 2009). Zoonosis can be classified according to their circulation in the ecosystem. These are either classified as synanthropic zoonosis, with an urban (domestic) cycle in which the source of infection are domestic and synanthropic animals (e.g. cat scratch disease, urban rabies and zoonotic ringworm) or exoanthropic zoonosis, with a sylvatic (feral and wild) cycle in natural foci outside human habitats (e.g. wildlife rabies, arbovirus, lyme disease and tularemia). Some zoonotic diseases can circulate in both urban and natural cycles (e.g. chagas disease and yellow fever). A review study identified that 1415 species of infectious organism are pathogenic to human beings. This includes 217 viruses and prions, 538 bacteria and rickettsia, 307 fungi, 66 protozoa and 287 helminthes. Out of these, 868 (61%) are zoonotic in nature (Taylor et al. 2001). More than 60% of the emerging human infectious diseases are zoonotic in nature and 70% of their reservoirs are wild animals (Cutler et al. 2010). The reservoirs of several zoonotic diseases are wild animals whose causative agents are viral, rickettsial, chlamydial, bacterial, parasitic and mycotic(Bengis et al. 2004). Zoonotic diseases like tuberculosis, plague and rabies have badly affected the mankind since ancient times and the reservoirs of all of these are wild animals (Stone et al. 2009). Some zoonotic diseases in human beings are self-limiting whose signs range from few days to a long term illness e.g. gastroenteritis caused byGiardia, Cryptosporidium, and Salmonella species.Some zoonotic diseases may cause abortions (Toxoplasmosis) and fatal encephalitis (Japanese encephalitis). Whereas some zoonotic diseases may causes high mortality e.g. Marburg hemorrhagic fever(MacNeil and Rollin 2012). Zoonotic diseases cause death not only in their natural hosts but also in endangered wild animal species near to extinctione.g. Ebola virus cause high mortality in monkeys (Nunn et al. 2008). It is clear from various studies in different zoos that both anthropozoonotic and zooanthroponotic transmission can occur (Adejinmi and Ayinmode 2008). Zoonotic agents have potential to be used for bioterrorism. The bioterrorism attack is aimed to cause fear, destabilization, stress, illness and death in people, animals and plants. (Lin 2014). Air, water and food may be the warfare biological vehicles for its spread. During World War 1, anthrax was used as a biological warfare in animal populations. Glanders and typhoid were also used for bioterrorism attack in 1910 and 1970, respectively. Several cases of bioterrorism also occurred in the United States due to anthrax in September and October 2001 (Spencer 2007). A Zoo worker should haveknowledge of the transmission of the disease to avoid its transmission. The common ways of the transmission are direct mode (ingestion, animal bites, inhalation, needle prick injuries and skin contact) and indirect mode (vector borne, fomite, long distanceand airborne transmission). In zoo management, the role of veterinarians is extremely useful. Their job exposes them to several health-related threats during routine operations. e.g. animal bites, needle prick injuries, back injuries, exposure to anesthetic gases and even mortality in certain cases (Hill et al. 1998; Kabuusu et al. 2010). The personal protective equipment’s are not used during restraining, treatment, necropsy and cleaning the animal enclosures. It may increases the chances of zoonotic diseases to zoo workers and veterinarians. The disposal of wild animal carcasses, organs, unused food, feces and urine by unscientific methodsenhances the process of pathogens transmission(McLaughlin 2002). Laboratory personnel can also be infected with zoonotic diseases due to lack of good laboratory practices in wildlife disease diagnostic laboratories(Rietschel 1998). Therefore, prevention and control of zoonosis must be an important part of zoo occupational health and safety measures. Preventive measures can be either general or specifically designed for a particular disease. It is possible to prevent many of the zoonotic diseases by following basic hygiene and sanitation procedures.The present study was conducted to determine knowledge, attitude, practice and experience levels about zoonosis among zoo workers of district Lahore(Lahore Zoo, Jallo Wildlife Park and Lahore Safari Zoo).
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A zoo is a place where wild animals are kept for exhibition purposes to the public.It includes: aquaria, sanctuaries, bird gardens and safari/wildlife parks. These are centers for wild animal’sconservation and for public recreation and education (Cuaron2005). Epidemiologists, wildlife biologists, veterinarians and conservationists used these for research purpose.According to an estimate Pakistan is maintainingapproximately 27 zoos, deer parks, etc.(Walker 2014).
Zoonotic diseases are those which are naturally transmitted from animals to human beings and vice versa. The word Zoonosis is derived from the Greek word zoon (animal) and nosos (disease). The diseases which are transferred from human beings to animals are known as Zooanthroponotic (Greek “Zoon” = animal, “anthrópos” = man, “nosos” = disease) diseases e.g. tuberculosis, measles, giardiasis and amoebiasis. On the other hand the diseases which are transmitted from animals to human beings are known as anthropozoonotic diseases e.g. anthrax, AIDS, psittacosis and rabies (Epstein and Price 2009).
Zoonosis can be classified according to their circulation in the ecosystem. These are either classified as synanthropic zoonosis, with an urban (domestic) cycle in which the source of infection are domestic and synanthropic animals (e.g. cat scratch disease, urban rabies and zoonotic ringworm) or exoanthropic zoonosis, with a sylvatic (feral and wild) cycle in natural foci outside human habitats (e.g. wildlife rabies, arbovirus, lyme disease and tularemia). Some zoonotic diseases can circulate in both urban and natural cycles (e.g. chagas disease and yellow fever).
A review study identified that 1415 species of infectious organism are pathogenic to human beings. This includes 217 viruses and prions, 538 bacteria and rickettsia, 307 fungi, 66 protozoa and 287 helminthes. Out of these, 868 (61%) are zoonotic in nature (Taylor et al. 2001). More than 60% of the emerging human infectious diseases are zoonotic in nature and 70% of their reservoirs are wild animals (Cutler et al. 2010).
The reservoirs of several zoonotic diseases are wild animals whose causative agents are viral, rickettsial, chlamydial, bacterial, parasitic and mycotic(Bengis et al. 2004). Zoonotic diseases like tuberculosis, plague and rabies have badly affected the mankind since ancient times and the reservoirs of all of these are wild animals (Stone et al. 2009). Some zoonotic diseases in human beings are self-limiting whose signs range from few days to a long term illness e.g. gastroenteritis caused byGiardia, Cryptosporidium, and Salmonella species.Some zoonotic diseases may cause abortions (Toxoplasmosis) and fatal encephalitis (Japanese encephalitis). Whereas some zoonotic diseases may causes high mortality e.g. Marburg hemorrhagic fever(MacNeil and Rollin 2012). Zoonotic diseases cause death not only in their natural hosts but also in endangered wild animal species near to extinctione.g. Ebola virus cause high mortality in monkeys (Nunn et al. 2008). It is clear from various studies in different zoos that both anthropozoonotic and zooanthroponotic transmission can occur (Adejinmi and Ayinmode 2008).
Zoonotic agents have potential to be used for bioterrorism. The bioterrorism attack is aimed to cause fear, destabilization, stress, illness and death in people, animals and plants. (Lin 2014). Air, water and food may be the warfare biological vehicles for its spread. During World War 1, anthrax was used as a biological warfare in animal populations. Glanders and typhoid were also used for bioterrorism attack in 1910 and 1970, respectively. Several cases of bioterrorism also occurred in the United States due to anthrax in September and October 2001 (Spencer 2007).
A Zoo worker should haveknowledge of the transmission of the disease to avoid its transmission. The common ways of the transmission are direct mode (ingestion, animal bites, inhalation, needle prick injuries and skin contact) and indirect mode (vector borne, fomite, long distanceand airborne transmission). In zoo management, the role of veterinarians is extremely useful. Their job exposes them to several health-related threats during routine operations. e.g. animal bites, needle prick injuries, back injuries, exposure to anesthetic gases and even mortality in certain cases (Hill et al. 1998; Kabuusu et al. 2010).
The personal protective equipment’s are not used during restraining, treatment, necropsy and cleaning the animal enclosures. It may increases the chances of zoonotic diseases to zoo workers and veterinarians. The disposal of wild animal carcasses, organs, unused food, feces and urine by unscientific methodsenhances the process of pathogens transmission(McLaughlin 2002). Laboratory personnel can also be infected with zoonotic diseases due to lack of good laboratory practices in wildlife disease diagnostic laboratories(Rietschel 1998).
Therefore, prevention and control of zoonosis must be an important part of zoo occupational health and safety measures. Preventive measures can be either general or specifically designed for a particular disease. It is possible to prevent many of the zoonotic diseases by following basic hygiene and sanitation procedures.The present study was conducted to determine knowledge, attitude, practice and experience levels about zoonosis among zoo workers of district Lahore(Lahore Zoo, Jallo Wildlife Park and Lahore Safari Zoo).

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