Muteado - Posted on 03 March 2015

Rommie Whittaker

In recent months The San Francisco health department has alerted many San Francisco free food service entities such as soup kitchens of a potentially lethal infectious disease known as Shigella.

Shigella is an oral fecal disease that is initially caused by ingesting human fecal matter, and is generally spread when the infected stool is spread to others who ingest it.

Generally there are 10 -20 cases of it per year, however as early as December of last year rates have shot up to 100.

Numbers have been cut in half since January and are hoped to continue to decline even more in the upcoming months. Symptoms of Shigella include vomiting and continuous painful diarrhea.

The number of cases of Shigella are believed to have dropped due to the diligence of soup kitchen volunteers and workers at various locations throughout the city such as Martin De Porres house of hospitality, taking the following proactive steps.

Such measures as not allowing clients self service for such items as bread and water by handing each client bread with tongs, pre pouring water in individual cups and providing individual packets of salt and pepper as well as prepackaged plastic eating utensils, providing clients with information about Shigella and encouraging them to wash their hands with warm soapy water, which has always been a policy and proves to be one of the most effective ways of combating this dreaded illness.

Other San Francisco soup kitchens such as Mother Brown’s in Bayview Hunter point area require clients to wash and dry their hands before participating in a meal.


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