Slaughterhouse surveys are important in the detection and management of zoonotic diseases. Routine reports from the Kumasi slaughterhouse, in the Ashanti region of Ghana, include cases of zoonotic diseases. Due to its location and size, Kumasi is the major cattle market and an important transit point for cattle trade from places within and outside Ghana. This present study was designed to examine slaughterhouse reports and to explore the nature of the knowledge, attitude and practices of butchers who operate at this slaughterhouse, in relation to zoonoses. The study was largely descriptive, employing qualitative methods and tools. Butchers were interviewed and their practices along the production line observed. The study indicates that zoonotic diseases are frequently detected at the Kumasi slaughterhouse. However the knowledge, attitudes, practices and beliefs of the butchers are largely inadequate for their profession in view of the important public health role that butchers play. The butchers have never received any form of training. It is recommended that the butchers receive training on a regular basis and that laws be formulated and implemented to protect the health of the butchers and the general public. Copyright (C) 2000 Elsevier Science B.V.
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