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Delta Govt Confirms Lassa Fever outbreak in 4 LGAs

The Delta State Government has confirmed the outbreak of Lassa fever in Okpe, Oshimili North, Oshimili South, and Ndokwa East local government areas of the state.

The state government said four confirmed cases had been recorded so far.

The state Commissioner for Health, Dr. Joseph Onojaeme, made the announcement while briefing newsmen in Asaba, the state capital.

He called on Delta residents to keep their environment clean and ensure that rats do not breed in or around their homes.

He said the government had constituted Emergency Operation Centres (EOCs) across the state to monitor the situation and ensure residents are periodically updated of the development.

Onojaeme said the government was doing a lot of advocacy, especially to health workers, and sensitisation of residents to have a high index of suspicion when they see those cases.

He said, “In week 12, we have four confirmed cases so far recorded with a fatality rate of 50% though the general fatality rate for Lassa fever is 1 – 15% so we are doing everything humanly possible to ensure that we curtail the transmission from patient to health workers and from patients to relatives.”

He said the state government was working closely with Irrua Specialist Hospital, Edo State, and had been able to get results of Lassa fever tests within 24 hours as against 72 hours.

The state epidemiologist, Dr. Mildred Igumbor, said one case of Lassa fever was an outbreak, hence all hands must be on deck to ensure the elimination of the disease.

“To ensure prevention and control measures are in place in our health facilities, health workers must have a very index of suspicion. We are telling everyone that not all fever cases are malaria cases so if you are sick please go to any nearest health facility or qualified medical personnel to seek medical attention.

“So, if you get there and the health personnel have a high level of suspicion you will be tested and with the result received such patient will be properly managed,” she added,

Igumbor said that the isolation centre in the Federal Medical Centre, Asaba, built by the state government has the capacity for management of confirmed cases, adding that if there was a need for referrals they would be transferred to Irrua Specialist Hospital, Edo State.

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