6 October 2017

Nigeria: Monkey Pox Outbreak - Govt Calls for Calm

Photo: Vanguard
Monkey pox.

Abuja — The Federal Government has called for calm following the outbreak of a viral infection known as Monkey Pox in Bayelsa state.

In a press release by the Ministry of Health, the Health Minister, Prof Isaac Adewole disclosed that the health Facilities in the state have been placed on red alert adding that affected patients are under observation as well with supportive treatments.

The Minister further explained that monkey pox is caused by a virus in the class of a group of viruses that included chicken pox and small pox.

'Investigation is still on-going and our partners are working with us on this reported outbreak' while the NCDC team in Bayelsa State would give support' the Minister said.

Adewole however said the disease could not be confirmed until laboratory investigations by World Health Organisation(WHO) referral laboratories in Dakar and Senegal confirms it.

He added that though the infection is mild, there is no known treatment and no preventive vaccines hence the public should be at alert and avoid crowded places.

The Minister also urged Nigerians to report any suspected case to the nearest health facility, while health workers are advised to maintain a high index of suspicion and observe safety precautions.

The symptoms include headache, fever, back pains and in advanced cases, rashes bigger than those caused by chicken pox.

The public is also advised to avoid eating dead animals, bush meat and particularly monkeys.

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