LifeStock was asked to develop an educational program to prevent infection of people with a deadly disease, Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic Fever (CCHF). This is a zoonotic disease, spread by ticks, which can infect cattle. Although cattle show no signs of disease, people who are in close contact with the blood or tissues of livestock, or their ticks, are at high risk of infection.
There are periodic small “outbreaks” in many parts of the world, including in the Middle East, where there is a high incidence in slaughterhouse workers and butchers.
We partnered with the Iraqi Ministry of Agriculture. Our efforts ran for ten months ending in May 2020. Using a distance education platform, LifeStock developed six PowerPoint presentations with extensive animation and multiple graphics which we had translated into Arabic. The PowerPoints depict methods of transmission, signs of disease, and key prevention strategies and they were delivered in Arabic to about 100 veterinarians, public health professionals, slaughterhouse workers, and butchers. The presentations ran once a week for six weeks. After each presentation a quiz was delivered to verify that learning objectives were met.
Subsequent to the live training program, LifeStock developed a color booklet highlighting these concepts using many illustrations and photos for distribution to various institutions throughout the country. More than 15,000 booklets were delivered to all slaughtering plants, butchers’ associations, veterinary colleges, departments of health, and throughout the Ministry of Agriculture. We were able to have them printed on a tough polymer paper for longevity.
This project was funded by the US Bioengagement Program through the American Society for Microbiology.