9 October 2017

Nigeria: Monkeypox Spreads to Lagos, Two Cases Recorded

Photo: The Guardian
Lagos.

The Lagos State government on Monday alerted the public of a possible outbreak of the new viral disease, Monkeypox, saying two suspected cases have been recorded in the state.

The Lagos State Commissioner for Health, Jide Idris, who disclosed this at a news conference on Monday, said the two suspected cases were currently being investigated in the state.

Without disclosing identity and location, the commissioner said the two cases were recorded in a private hospital in the state.

"Though no confirmed case has been recorded, there is need to sensitise members of the public and provide adequate information on measures for prevention and control of the disease in line with the policy of the State government," he said.

He added that one of the suspects just came from Bayelsa State and reportedly ate bush meat.

Mr. Idris said the two suspected cases were currently being quarantined in their houses pending the result of the investigation.

"In the wake of this outbreak, the state government is reiterating the need for members of the public to observe and maintain a high standard of personal and environmental hygiene at all times as part of the precautionary measures to prevent the spread to the State."

He urged members of the public to also be vigilant and report any suspected case of the disease to the nearest public health facility or the Directorate of Disease Control in the State Ministry of Health.

"Also, health workers are advised to practice universal safety precautions in the management of suspected or confirmed cases, wear appropriate Personal Protective Equipment when attending to cases, wash hands after each contact with the patient or contaminated materials while surveillance system must be strengthened.

"The state government has mobilised the Disease Surveillance Officers in the 57 LGAs and LCDAs in the state and health workers in both public and private health facilities have been placed on high alert," Mr. Idris said.

Mr. Idris called on residents of the state to remain calm and go about their businesses without fear as the government had put in place adequate measures to effectively prevent and control the spread of the infection to the State.

"In case of any suspected case of Monkeypox, the Lagos State Ministry of Health should be notified through the following mobile lines: 08037170614, 09087106072," he said.

The disease has already been recorded in two states: Bayelsa and Akwa Ibom.

In Yenagoa, Bayelsa capital, where it first broke out, no fewer than 11 people were put under medical surveillance at a state hospital.

A medical doctor and 10 persons suspected to be infected with the virus were quarantined in an isolation centre at the Niger Delta University Teaching Hospital Okolobiri in Yenagoa Local Government Area of the state.

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