When we thought that we could live no more in fear as regards the outbreak of Lassa fever in the country, seven people that tested positive to the virus in Katsina State, have been placed under quarantine, while one have been confirmed dead. Director, Public Health in the State Ministry of Health, Dr. Shamsuddeen Yahaya made this known to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Katsina on Thursday.
Yahaya who confirmed the death of one person, says other victims were in stable condition and responding to treatment. He also confirmed that one other person who tested positive had been treated and discharged.
According to him, other 18 persons whose blood samples were taken to Lagos for screening had tested negative and had been discharged from the General Hospital and Federal Medical Centre, Katsina, where they were initially isolated.
Dr. Yahaya revealed that the cases recorded in the state were cases of transmission from person-to-person during contact with an infected person, he thus, urged members of the public to report any suspected case to the nearest medical facility to prevent further spread of the disease. He also appealed to religious and community leaders to educate their followers on the need to avoid direct contact with corpses of suspected persons after death.
He concluded by assuring the citizens of the state that there was no need to panic as the Ministry of Health are working hard to keep the situation under check.
“The Lassa fever situation in Katsina is under control and there is no need for panic among the public. The Ministry of Health in collaboration with Rotary International are currently undertaking sensitization campaign in markets to educate people on the preventive measures against the disease.”
No fewer than 13 rape victims have been treated at Funtua General Hospital in Katsina State from January to date. The hospital’s Medical Director, Tijjani Bakori, told the News Agency of Nigeria in an interview on Thursday that most of the cases were severe.
He also noted that all the victims were below the age of 13 and mostly from less privileged families. He pleaded with the Katsina State Government and local councils in the area to ensure that the perpetrators are brought to book.