Lassa fever: Anambra state govt. moves to combat disease, unveils preventive measures

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Gov. Willie Obiano: There is no room for lassa fever in Anambra state

The Anambra state government has established two special centres at both the Onitsha General Hospital, and the Umueri General Hospital in Anambra East Local Government Area to treat any lassa fever patient in the state.

This development followed the reported case of a 25-year old student of one of the universities in the state who was diagnosed a few days ago of lassa fever, and rushed to the regional Virology Centre in Abakaliki, Ebonyi State, where he received adequate medical attention.

According to a statement signed by C. Don Adinuba, Anambra state Commissioner for Information & Public Enlightenment, and made available to Summit News, all the people that came into contact with the lassa fever patient in the past three weeks have been quarantined and being examined by medical experts.

Adinuba said the state government has a responsibility to ensure that no other case of lassa fever occurs in the state, adding that where it exists, the government will take prompt action to eradicate it.   

The statement read:  “Given the high mortality rate of lassa fever which has in recent days been reported in various states of the federation, all Ndi Anambra and all those resident in the state are advised to take the following precautionary measures:

 “Always wash your hands thoroughly with soap; use sanitiser to clean your hands from time to time;

“ Always cover you foods very well so that rats, which transmit the disease to human beings through urine and faeces, will not touch the foods;

 “Cook your food very well so that where it is touched by rat’s urine or excreta, it will not be dangerous to human health;

Lassa fever: medical doctors attending to a victim

“Stop spreading your foodstuffs like grain and cassava pellets on the road where rats can easily assess them;

“Stop bush burning which drives rats from bushes to homes;

“Stop self-medication because lassa fever may be confused with common illnesses like malaria with which they share symptoms like high temperature and nausea; and report any suspected case of lassa fever to the Anambra State Ministry of Health at Jerome Udoji Secretariat, Awka, or to the Onitsha General Hospital or to the General Hospital in Umueri, Anambra East Local Government Area.

 “The doctors and other medical staff members in these places have been well trained to handle lassa fever in the most professional way. They have been placed on red alert and to have high index of suspicion on presenting symptoms like high fever.”

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