BAHAWALPUR: A report submitted by the Ramazan Bazaar coordinator on Tuesday says they have conducted blood-screening of 33 butchers and their staff at the 12 Ramazan Bazaars in the city. The report says this was a part of their efforts to protect the consumers in the five tehsils of Bahawalpur district. None of the butchers or their workers was diagnosed with any communicable illnesses, the report says.
Assistant Commissioner Abdul Rauf Maher submitted the report to DCO Ehtisham Anwar Mahaar who had directed the administration to conduct a blood screening drive of workers handling mutton, beef and chicken at Ramazan Bazaars. “We wanted to create a health profile of the butchers at the 12 bazaars,” the DCO had said before the drive was launched.
“We are committed to creating a supply-chain of high quality hygienic meat. This is why it is imperative that systematic blood screening of butchers be conducted in order to protect consumers from potential communicable diseases,” the DCO had said.
Health EDO Shahid Khaliq had then designed the blood screening drive. Mobile health units were sent to each Ramazan Bazaar where the health officials collected blood samples of all butchers and their staff. The blood samples collected from 33 butchers were examined in pathological laboratories. All tests were declared satisfactory, according to the report. The Health EDO said three of the diseases they had screened the blood for were hepatitis B and C, and tuberculosis. “Presence of these diseases could indicate a major public health hazard.”
The blood screening drive is a welcome step, the EDO said. Of the 33 butchers and workers tested for diseases, 19 were in Bahawalpur city, three in Khairpur Tamewali tehsil, four in Hasilpur tehsil; two in Yazman tehsil and three in Ahmadpur East tehsil
Published in The Express Tribune, June 22nd, 2016.
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