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Lassa fever kills single mother in Delta, corps member placed on watchlist

Valentine Chinyem

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Lassa fever disease has claimed the life of a single mother in Asaba, Delta State.

This is even as the lives of two others including a serving member of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) are said to be on the danger list.

The deceased single mother was rushed to the Federal Medical Centre (FMC), Asaba but died barely twenty-four hours on admission.

Commissioner for Health in the state, Dr. Mordi Ononye who confirmed the death in Asaba, said the serving corps member was responding to treatment at the Irua Specialist Hospital in neighbouring Edo State.

Ononye who did not revealed how many people have been quarantined as a result of the outbreak of the disease however assured fear-stricken residents of the state capital and its environs of government ability to control the spread of the disease in the state.

He said robust mechanism was already in place to sensitize the public on how the disease can be contained to guide against spreading further.

Ononye stated that both the private and public health facilities in the state are being carried along in its efforts to check the disease from going out of control.

As part of measures to strengthen its sensitization and advocacy efforts, the commissioner said the ministry was synergizing with the information ministry with a view to having a holistic sensitization outreach across the length and breadth of the state.

He added that the state government had built and furnished a 10-bed Isolation Unit at the Federal Medical Centre, saying more collaboration was on with the Federal Government and its agencies to tackle the disease.
On the entry points into the state, Dr. Ononye said health authorities located at the various entry points into the state and country at large such as the land, sea and air ports/borders were on red alert and working in tandem with the Delta State Disease Notification and Surveillances Officers (DNSOs) to identify and track the disease.

He stated that surveillance and contact tracing was on-going particularly on those who came in contact with the two reported cases of the disease, adding that officers of the Federal Medical Centre, Asaba and DNSOs were synergizing and sharing reports.

He said the disease is contagious, and urged the residents to a high personal and environment hygiene, address places where rodents hide and breed, and refuse to expose food and drinks to rats, assuring that the disease would not be able to spread.