RESIDENTS in flood-prone areas should be extra cautious when coming into contact with flood- water and also ensure that children do not play in it, says Johor Health director Datuk Dr Aman Rabu
This is because floodwater is a potential source of water-borne diseases such as leptospirosis, melioidosis, cholera and typhoid, as well as bacteria that cause food poisoning.
Dr Aman said flood victims should ensure they were getting clean water for their daily use.
“Ensure food and drinks are clean.
“Wash hands regularly after using the toilet, cleaning the house or touching items that have been exposed to floodwater or sewage,” he advised.
Flood victims should also ensure their surroundings are clean.
“Rubbish that is not disposed of properly can also lead to health risks as it attracts disease vectors such as mosquitoes and rats.
“Heavy rainfall or floods also create stagnant water that can act as breeding ground for the Aedes and anopheles mosquitoes,
“If left unchecked, this will lead to dengue, malaria and chikungunya outbreaks,” he warned.
Dr Aman also urged those living in flood-prone areas to secure their important documents and personal belongings in waterproof cases and be ready to move out whenever ordered by the authorities.
“They should keep themselves updated on the latest weather conditions and get their information from a valid source.”
He also said that all electrical items should be placed on higher levels or turned off when not in use.
“Those who are pregnant or have chronic ailments should keep safe their medical documents and medication, and alert the authorities of their condition.”
Dr Aman added that family members of bedridden or dialysispatients should alert the nearest health facility.
Most importantly, he said all Covid-19 standard operating procedures should be adhered to, including avoiding crowded and confined spaces, maintaining physical distancing, wearing face masks and ensuring personal hygiene.