• Tuesday, April 23, 2024
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FG confirms 14 suspected cases of Lassa fever in Kaduna

FG confirms 14 suspected cases of Lassa fever in Kaduna

…says 92 under surveillance

The Federal Government has confirmed 14 cases in the suspected outbreak of Lassa fever in a military facility in Kaduna State.

Iziaq Salako, the minister of state for the environment said in a statement on Tuesday, that 12 suspected cases were recorded with six deaths. Two additional cases originated from another facility in Barau Dikko Hospital, while 92 persons are under surveillance.

Read also: Nigeria Lassa fever deaths spike 14% in 2023

The minister added that the team visited the affected facility (44 Army Referral Hospital) on February 25, 2024.

According to the statement issued by Ibrahim Haruna, head of press and public relations unit at the federal ministry of health, the minister launched the National Deratization framework exercise to prevent and control the spread of Lassa fever in the country.

Meanwhile, Yakubu Muhammad, the registrar, Environmental Health Council of Nigeria (EHCON), has restated that the minister’s directives on all the facilities whether public or private should undergo derating exercise for hotels, markets, restaurants and recreation centres after which they would be issued Derating Exemption Certificate by EHCON.

Yakubu disclosed that the ministry has directed the council to embark on massive capacity building to update the knowledge of the practitioners on the innovations, and new approaches to control and address the disease.

“He added that the component of health education, promotion and creation of awareness in the communities also plays an important role.

“At the community level, the issue of waste management cannot be over-emphasised. At this time and period, remnant food should not be exposed while our foodstuff and stores should be rat-proof. In the character of rats, once there is no food, rats vacate the house.”

Read also:  FCT confirms 2 cases of Lassa fever

He said another approach to combatting the spread of the disease was by getting to the grassroots, adding that “as the government is doing their job, citizens should do their parts.”

He also asked farmers drying their farm produce on the roads to discontinue the practice, as rats urinate and pass faeces on them thereby contaminating the food.

He also warned communities against careless consumption of bush meat, saying, “This is not healthy for now because the virus has a residual effect even after the death of the animal.”