…As Commissioner says no case of Lassa fever in Ogun***
There is no recorded case of Lassa fever in Oyo State, the Commissioner for Health, Dr Bashir Bello, has said.
The commissioner, who addressed newsmen on the Lassa fever outbreak in some parts of country on Thursday in Ibadan, however, urged residents to imbibe good hygienic practices.
Bello gave an assurance that the state was prepared to handle any outbreak of the disease.
“We are prepared to cope with the situation if at all Lassa fever is detected in any part of the state.
“We are on red alert to take proactive measure to save lives in the state.
” Government is creating awareness and public enlightenment across the state, we urge every resident of the state to refrain from poor personal and domestic hygiene.
“Let us ensure that our food packages are covered always and those that eat rats should abstain.
“Our fathers and mothers in the villages and farms should abstain from harmful and dirty food processing practices such as sun-drying of cassava, yam flour and other farm products on the roads which can probably lead to their contamination by rat droppings.
“We should also have attitudinal change on how we dispose waste and refuse so that it won’t attract rats to our environment, ” he said.
Bello disclosed that all government hospitals in the state had been put on red alert with isolated wards to accommodate Lassa fever patients if discovered.
He urged residents to call 08033849703 to report any suspected cases of Lassa fever for prompt and responsive action.
In the meantime, the Ogun Government has denied report of a confirmed case of Lassa Fever in the state.
The Commissioner for Health, Dr. Tomi Coker, denied the report in a statement on Thursday in Abeokuta.
Coker said that the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) had erroneously listed Ogun as one of the affected states, saying that was not true.
“The affected states as indicated by the NCDC include neighbouring Ondo , Edo, as well as Ebonyi, Plateau, Taraba and Bauchi States,’’ Coker said.
The commissioner said that the state government had put health officials on red alert in the event of any suspected case.
She added that health officials would maintain a high index of suspicion for Lassa Fever and treat all cases of fever symptoms with caution.
Coker described Lassa Fever as an endemic acute viral hemorrhage illness usually transmitted from rodents to human through ingestion of food or materials contaminated by excreta or urine of infected rodents.
She added, “The disease is also transmitted from human to human, through direct contact with blood tissues, secretions and excretion of infected humans.’’
Coker, however, allayed the fear of residents and advised them to avoid contact with rodents and ensure personal, as well as environmental hygiene.
She directed that all suspected cases of Lassa Fever should be reported to the Local Government Area Disease Surveillance Notification Officer (DSNO) or call cell phone nos: 09099140121 and 09099140122.