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Strange killer disease in Ondo State is neither Ebola nor Lassa Fever: Experts

By The Rainbow
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Experts have quelled fires that the strange illness ravaging the Ode-Irele community in Ondo state, which is now known as #OndoX, might be highly infectious and deadly  Ebola virus disease.

A group of experts under the aegis of Ebola Alert  said Friday that samples taken from victims and tested in a laboratory in Lagos tested negative to Ebola and five other deadly diseases.

The group said in its Twitter handle that “OndoX samples tests negative for Ebola Virus, Yellow Fever, Lassa Fever Virus, Rift Valley Fever Virus, Dengue Virus, West Nile Virus.”

The group,  helped with the Ebola Virus Disease interventions in the country,  said the samples were “currently undergoing toxicology screen”.

The strange disease which broke out in the sleepy Ode-Irele community about a week ago has resulted in several deaths. Recent figures put it at about 28, far more than nine deaths occasioned by the deadly Ebola Virus Disease, which literarily shut down Nigeria last June.

Th e disease, whose cause remained unknown, has  spread rapidly around the community, killing its victims within 24  hours. S ymptoms include headache, blurry vision/total blindness and convulsion.

According to the Ebola Alert group, three survivors have been reported so far.

The Ondo state government on Friday set up emergency task teams and a Situation Room to coordinate the response teams working from the frontlines.

The state Commissioner for Health, Dayo Adeyanju, said in a statement that the five emergency response task teams were raised to handle different aspects of control mechanisms.

The task teams are Contact Tracing Committee, Case Management Committee, Laboratory/Forensic Committee, Community Education & Mobilization Committee and Print, Electronic & Social Media Sensitisation Committee

“These and other measures have been put in place to ensure the safety of lives of our dear people of Irele. Let us continue to exercise calm and caution and eschew fear mongering as there is manifest evidence that the situation is being contained,” Mr. Adeyanju said.

“In case of any suspected case, contact: WHO 08033720966, LGA DSNO – 08112524793 and the State Epidemiologist – 08062078384.”

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