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3 More LUTH Staff Test Positive For Lassa Fever

Three out of the 100 health workers that came in contact with a pregnant woman who died of Lassa fever at the Lagos University Teaching Hospital, Idi-Araba, have tested positive for the infection.

LUTH’s Chief Medical Director, Prof. Chris Bode, confirmed this at a joint briefing by the hospital’s management and officials of the Lagos State Ministry of Health on Wednesday.

Bode said,

 “Three of the persons who have symptoms are receiving treatment at the Isolation Ward. They are being cared for by a group of professionals, volunteer doctors, epidemiologists, microbiologists, emotional caregivers and cleaners round-the-clock.
“And I want to assure the concerned public that they are responding well to treatment. This current outbreak is effectively being monitored. Those that are being monitored have been given thermometers to check their temperature. So, let us douse the panic.”

Director, Diseases Control, Lagos State Ministry of Health, Dr. Eniola Erinosho, who was also at the brief said the state government had taken charge of the body of the first victim from the family and had taken necessary guidelines in the disposal of the body.

“We are on top of the situation and there should be no panic. The index case was referred from Divine Grace Hospital, Imota, in the Ikorodu area of Lagos. We have been there and have taken charge of the situation, but none of the people there has actually come down with the fever.
“We have about 22 people there. Today is the 14th day of monitoring and we hope that in the next seven days they will be discharged from the monitoring list. At present, we have two suspected cases at the Mainland Hospital but they are under control.”

On the second corpse in possession of LUTH, he said:

 “We have been to the house of the late patients and hospitals where they were first admitted. All arrangements have been made to bury the corpse based on international standards.
“In a case like this, we use body bags and we seal the coffin and the relatives will not see the body. From there, we have a special unit in the ministry called the State Environmental Monitoring Unit, which carries out the procedure.”

Erinosho, who advised Nigerians to keep their foodstuffs away from rats, however, urged them not to panic as Lassa fever, according to him, is a curable disease whose treatment is readily available in the country.


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