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New Zealand Medical Services in Middle East and Italy




Do not leave any refuse about to attract or allow flies to form breeding places. See that lids fit all dust-bins and keep the bins covered. page 95 See that all latrines especially those used by natives, are fly-proof. Personal investigation of this matter will cause some surprises. Protect all food from flies. Use fly-swatters and fly papers to kill the odd fly that may get into the house or barrack room.


Flies cause a spread of many diseases—not only diarrhoea and dysentery, but also cholera and typhoid fever, and diseases of the eye.


Units are responsible for the prevention of the breeding, and for the destruction of flies, within their own area.


The prevention of fly-breeding is mainly a matter of the efficient fly-proofing of latrines, and the storage of all refuse in fly-proof receptacles and the satisfactory disposal of same.


The best fly poison is a solution of formalin and sugar, placed in saucers, with a piece of bread in the middle for the fly to settle on. This solution will be prepared in bulk under the supervision of the Medical Officer in charge of the nearest medical inspection room or RAP, and issued to units as required. The solution is non-poisonous to human beings and animals. To be really successful it must be of a definite strength, and no fluid should be available with which the fly can satisfy his thirst apart from this solution.


All offices, messrooms, etc., should have some form of fly-trap.


The most efficient and easily constructed fly-trap is made by mixing together resin and castor oil, and whilst still hot, painting the mixture on sheets of tin or hoop iron or stiff wires (old telegraph wires, the wires used for binding bales of hay, etc.). These wires should have a hook at one end to hang from, and a piece of paper or cork at the bottom to prevent drips. These are hung on beams, etc. When covered with flies the wires and tins can be cleaned by burning, and then used again.


Units will arrange with the officer in medical charge of troops for instruction of their sanitary personnel in the use of sprays, preparation of castor oil and resin mixtures, and the best method of using formalin solution.


As the contamination of food is the principal danger of these parts, all food must be stored in fly-proof safes and protected from flies. It is most important to place in food safes food which is not cooked, such as bread, biscuits, cheese, jam, and sugar, and it is also necessary to provide similar receptacles for eating and drinking utensils. Fly-proof conditions should exist where food is stored, etc., prepared and consumed. It is realised that this is not fully possible, but it is the ideal to aim at.


Units must ensure that fly-proof safes are available, if necessary constructing them from scrap material obtained from the Garrison Engineer.


Everything should be done to prevent flies breeding and to reduce the fly pest. A plague of flies has a big bearing on health. Quartermasters should draw scale supplies of sprays, fly-tox, resin, oil, and swatters, etc. Every effort must be made to prevent flies from breeding and to keep all areas free of any material likely to encourage these pests.