11 February 2013

Nigeria: Ondo Lassa Fever Confined to Single LG

Photo: Radio Okapi/ Ph. John Bompengo
Tests in a medical laboratory.

Outbreak of Lassa fever has been confined to a single local government area, Ose, according to local health workers.

Since January at least nine cases, including a police officer, have been recorded and some of them treated at the lone private hospital which handles Lassa fever, said Dr Stanley Adelabu, medical director of Adelabu Hospital and Maternity, Ose.

Ondo has received tablets and injections of Ribavirin, used to treat Lassa fever, and teams of medical experts in the wake of outbreak there, but Ose council has called for siting a diagnosis centre in the area.

Director of local government administration, Olipede Dare, said a diagnosis centre in the area would "avoid taking samples to Irrua Specialist Hospital in Edo State," which alone providesw confirmation for Lassa fever outbreaks nationwide.

Permanant secretary at Ondo health ministry, Dr Taiwo Oni, who received the drugs, insisted simple rules could help quell the outbreak.

This, according to him, include "killing all rats at home and making sure that you don't give room for rats to co-habit with human beings."

Covering foods and drinks to avoid contamination is also advised.

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