Temporary ban on import of fresh, frozen fruits and vegetables
01 Jun 2018 – 20:47
The Peninsula Online
Doha: The Ministry of Public Health has advised citizens and residents to avoid unnecessary travel to Kerala, India, for the time being, in the wake of Nipah virus outbreak in the Malabar region. There is a temporary ban on the import of fresh, frozen and frozen fruits and vegetables from Kerala, too, until the epidemic situation stabilizes.
A rough translation of the ministry statement reads:
The Ministry of Public Health has taken a number of precautionary measures in cooperation with other competent authorities in the country in the light of the outbreak of Nipah virus in the districts of Kozhikode and Malappuram of Kerala state in southern India.
The Ministry calls upon citizens and residents to avoid unnecessary travel temporarily to Kerala, during this period, except for extreme cases until the outbreak is contained in India. Those returned from the area in the last six weeks need to check with the nearest health center or hospital in the event of symptoms of fever.
The Joint Commission for the Control of Human Food has also adopted a temporary ban on the import of fresh and frozen fruits and vegetables from Kerala, until the epidemic situation stabilizes. The decision comes as a precautionary measure after following up situation in India and on the recommendations of international organisations.
The World Health Organization (WHO) guidelines emphasise the necessity of washing and peeling fruit before consumption.
The Ministry of Public Health also disseminated the standard definition of suspected cases, the mechanism of dealing with them, and the infection control guidelines to liaison officers in all hospitals and health centers to ensure the rapid reporting of any suspected cases.
A team on Communicable diseases in the Ministry of Public Health receives any communications or queries related to the disease round the clock on hotline numbers 66740948 and 66740951