GHS Dispels Lassa Fever Outbreak Scare

Nigeria Lassa outbreak: WHO scales up response

Nigeria Lassa outbreak: WHO scales up response

The Ghanaian press on Tuesday highlights measures put in place at the country's entry port at Aflao in the Volta Region and Kulungugu in the Upper East Region to screen travelers for Lassa fever.The Ghanaian Times reports that following the outbreak of Lassa fever in Nigeria, Port Health officials have embarked on vigorous screening to help prevent any infected case from entering into the country.

The outbreak, he explained, has been on-going for the past six weeks and has necessitated urgent spontaneous national response actions among all neighbouring countries, adding that, Lassa fever outbreak has been recurrent in Nigeria and the current outbreak has affected health workers in some states, he said.

"As we are all aware, the vectors (rats) are very close to the people in the market and when they (rats) touch what they (traders) sell, the buyers who consume the food would be infected".

Mr. Olajumoke said the sensitisation was aimed at educating the traders on the existence of Lassa fever, the symptoms of the fever and the appropriate steps to take in case such symptoms were noticed. "We realised that prevention is better than cure and that was why we came out to sensitize traders today".

In a statement Tuesday, WHO says 43 suspected deaths from the viral hemorrhagic fever were reported between January 1 and February 4 and 37 of them have been confirmed.

Upon listening to the doctors' advice, the leader of the market women at Akindeko market, Alhaja Sidikat Abidogun, appreciated and applauded the NMA for the initiative and enjoined the doctors to intensify the campaign and cover more markets so that majority of the people would be aware of the disease. We have recorded a death in Osun as a result of Lassa fever at the Obafemi Awolowo University Teaching Hospital in Osun.

"Also, 40 people are now quarantined at isolated centers and they are under close examination to determine if they have been infected".

He advised the public to maintain good home, and community hygiene to prevent the breeding of rodents that may infect their food and water with the virus, stay free from rats and block all their hideouts. "That was why we came out to sensitise the traders".