Educate yourself about Listeria, Joburg residents told

Health MMC Mpho Phalatse says it’s important for communities to be aware of which foods are likely to contain the bacteria.

A microscopic view of the listeria bacteria. Picture: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

JOHANNESBURG - The City of Johannesburg has intensified efforts to help to fight a listeriosis outbreak with calls for residents to educate themselves on the disease.

Health MMC Mpho Phalatse says that it is important for communities to be aware of which foods are likely to contain the bacteria.

Listeria is found in soil, water, and vegetation, and the elderly and children are most vulnerable to the disease.

Earlier this week, Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi announced that close to 40 South Africans had died following the outbreak, with most cases in Gauteng followed by Cape Town and KwaZulu-Natal.

Phalatse says that response teams have been activated to deal with the outbreak.

“We’ve increased the index of suspicion for Listeria patients that visit our clinics. We’re also using environmental health to engage our food handlers in the formal and informal trade.”

(Edited by Zamangwane Shange)