A fresh Lassa Fever Outbreak in Enugu State has left one dead, as confirmed by the State Government on Monday.
However the State’s Commissioner for Health, Dr. Fintan Ekochin who confirmed the Lassa Fever Outbreak in a press statement, told residents of the state that there is no need for panic as people in contact with the deceased before his death, have been placed on drugs known to prevent the spread of the virus if started early.
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Few months ago, the Enugu State government had urged residents to be vigilant, following the disease outbreak in Ebonyi State.The Commissioner for Health, Dr. Fintan Ekochin, made the appeal. He said then that although the disease has not been reported in the state, there were concerns about those who travel to and from Ebonyi.
He said: “Lassa fever has been a challenge in Ebonyi State as the people are prone to having issues that may lead to deaths. “Our concern is about those commuters, if they contact the disease, how do we select them from the general public, quarantine and treat them?”He said presently, since the disease is not endemic among the Enugu population, the risk remains lower.
Ekochin disclosed that the state had an internationally approved isolation ward, which could handle highly infectious diseases.
“The facility was one of the biggest challenges that the ministry faced in the last quarter of 2017, when monkey pox disease broke out.
“We had three suspected cases at that time and the state government funded the ministry of health to set up the isolation ward. It provided the opportunity of isolating patients from relations and medical workers.”
He added that what happened in Ebonyi was that the doctors and nurses who treated the patients got infected and died. The Commissioner for Health Ekochin also disclosed that an emergency preparedness team had met to discuss the implications of the breakout in Ebonyi.