The Lagos State Government on Friday confirmed that the Liberian native, who was admitted in a private hospital in Lagos over a reported case of Ebola disease, passed away on Thursday night. The 40-year-old Liberian working for a West African organization in Monrovia reportedly arrived Lagos on a flight from Monrovia via Lome, Togo on Sunday July 20, 2014.
Initial tests carried out on the victim at Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH) confirmed that the man contracted Ebola but authorities as at this morning, said that the result of a confirmatory test was still being awaited from Dakar, Senegal to conclude the tests.
Addressing a Press Conference on the development at the Bagauda Kaltho Press Centre, Alausa, the Commissioner for Health, Dr Jide Idris, said that the ministry had started collaborating with all other agencies to treat the body and ensure that it is properly disposed.
He added that because the victim was a foreign national, certain diplomatic steps have to be taken, which includes contacting the Liberian Embassy and ensuring the sanitization of the hospital where the victim was hospitalized before his death.
Dr Idris also stated that the ministry was in contact with the hospital to ensure that the corpse of the victim is sanitized and that the virus is killed to prevent it from spreading.
He also said that steps were being taken by the ministry in collaboration with federal agencies to man all the border points in the state towards preventing any case of anyone with suspected symptoms coming into the state.
The Commissioner explained that the ministry was also engaged in contact tracing with all those whom the victim came into contact with before his death and that the manifest of the aircraft which brought him to Lagos has been obtained by the ministry.
He reiterated that all of such people would be questioned and observed in the next 21 days to ascertain their state of health, adding that the State Government would also set up a treatment centre in case of any other reported case of the Ebola disease in the state.
In addition, the Special Adviser on Public Health, Dr Yewande Adesina, cautioned members of the general public to desist from sending panicky messages via their phones and on social media about the issue.
She stressed that the State Government was on top of the situation, and this explains the reason why there had been media briefings periodically on developments about the case since it broke.
Additionally, the Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr Lateef Ibirogba, said that the residents of the state should go about their lawful businesses, with the highest assurances that effective health measures have been put in place to guard against the spread of the disease from any source.
Also present at the briefing were the Special Adviser on Information and Strategy, Mr. Lateef Raji and Permanent Secretary, Primary Health Care Board, Dr Oguntimehin. (culled from ChannelsTV report)
You will recall I first posted about this disease in March when it was still wrecking havoc in DRC and later in April when we first became aware of the potentials of it crossing into Nigeria. Apparently, it has. Nobody seems to be listening to any of the talk about the government being ‘on top of the situation’, as should be expected. I already got a number of text messages, broadcasts and even calls from worried family and friends.
There are a lot of things I am unsure of, especially about the information being spread about preventive measures against Ebola a.k.a The Dumb Virus. But a few of the them which make sense as prevention – not just against Ebola – are listed below:
1. Do not buy and eat any fruit directly without washing it first very well.
2. Try and avoid unnecessary hand shaking; in Nigeria, we shake hands for the entire Europe and Africa put together. If you must shake hands, keep your hands away from your mouth and either use a hand sanitizer or wash with soap and water afterwards. Unlike HIV, Ebola can be spread through contact with body sweat or saliva, so be careful.
3. Avoid eating any meat from apes e.g monkeys and its families. For now, you might want to stay away from eating any meat that you do not know it’s source, most especially beloved ‘suya’ and ‘kilishi’ – they were never healthy anyways. If you must eat meat, buy and cook it yourself with sufficient salt, water and whatever else is used to boil meat.
4. In case you still need to be told, bathe as often as you can. With soap.
5. Stay informed. Watch, read and listen to the news daily; 30minutes away from Telemundo or your ’50 Shades of Grey’ will not kill you, but Ebola could.
Life is precious and singular. Preserve yours.
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