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Investigation of Shell Fish Poisoning in Micheweni District, Pemba Highland Tanzania

Tanzania FELTP Cohort X residents: Ally Hussein, Danstan Ngenzi and Ally Bilal under the supervision of Dr Salma Masauni (FELTP Alumni investigated an out of shell fish poisoning in Micheweni District, Pemba Highland Tanzania. On 26 January 2019, Ministry of Health Community Development Gender Elderly and Children received information from the Ministry of Health Zanzibar of patients from the same family who became sick after consumption shell fish (Sea turtle-kasa). The suspected food was eaten between the 19 and 21 January 2019. The patients presented with nausea, vomiting and body malaise. As of 22 January 2019, a total of 10 cases had been line-listed. Of the 10 cases 5 died giving a case fatality rate of 50%.

The objectives of the investigation were-

  • To confirm and determine the magnitude of the outbreak.
  • To characterize the outbreak in terms of time, place and person.
  • To identify the source of the outbreak through collection of human samples (blood, stool) and suspected food samples.
  • To institute effective control and preventive measures