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Just In: Borno Confirms 1 Lassa Fever Patient Dead, 3 Others Under Laboratory Investigation

By Sadiq Abubakar, The Nigerian Voice, Maiduguri
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Since 1969 when Borno State recorded the case of Lassa Fever outbreak in Lassa Village of Askira/Uba LGA of Borno state, today Thursday, 23rd january 2020 marks the second case of Lassa Fever in Maiduguri city of Borno state. A 24 year old man has been confirmed positive to symptoms of Lassa Fever after a thorough and careful tests.

It was also reported that apart from the patient, three other persons are suspected of having the virus and their samples have been sent to the designated laboratory for investigation while they have been quarantined and placed in routine checks and treatment with a view to avoid eventual spread of the viral disease.

The Borno State Commissioner of Health, Dr. Salisu Aliyu Kwaya Bura announced the confirmation of the outbreak of Lassa Fever in Maiduguri and it's envions Thursday at a press briefing with journalists held at Borno State Public Heath Emergency Operation Center (EOC) along Damboa road Maiduguri.

He said: "Following the death of the patient suspected to be carrying the killer disease who has been placed on treatment proved positive after series of tests and unfortunately died today Thursday.

"Apart from the patient, we also have two other persons who are unrelated to him but suspected to be suffering from the virus but have since been separated and placed on intensive care treatment pending the outcome of the samples sent for laboratory tests.

"Similarly, there is another case of a man suspected to be having the syntoms of the killer disease who is a health worker from Kano where the Kano Lassa Fever outbreak was reported. And is also undergoing treatment and separated from people pending the outcome of his lab test results", Kwaya Bura said.

The commissioner noted that it was quite unfortunate that the recent cases of Lassa Fever being heard in Kano and Imo states has finally reached Borno state pointing out that the viral disease can be contaminated through direct contact with the patient and facilities or things the patient used or is using including waers, food, hand shake, spoons, plates and anything that the patient touch.

He advised people to be careful with how they relate and mingle with others as the symtoms of the viral disease are contaminable while cautioning people to keep their envions clean and healthy, improve sanitation of their envions and be careful .

Dr. Kwaya Bura however called on the people to be calm and not to fear "as the situation is under control. Everything is under control. No need to panic or fear as already we are on top of the situation."

"We have set up a separate clinic at Bolori II Ward area for the patients and suspected cases where all treatments are being observed while awaiting the results of the samples from the laboratory.

"We separate the patients from the people. We are also tracking down places the deceased visited as we gathered he do travel to Hawul. He is a 24 year old man living in Bolori area. He is an indigene of Borno state", Aliyu said.

Accordung to him, the ministry is working in collaboration with other health partners to curtail the situation while calling on all the people and health workers in hospitals and clinics in both Communities to be very vigilant and observe all health facilities carefully as well as be highly vigilant on any suspicious person in the health center or Community.

He further called on the people to immediately report to the Lassa Fever Emergency Center or healthcare center nearest to them incase of any suspicous person or facility.

"They should report or relate with the health workers for appropriate treatment", Aliyu said.

Dr. Kwaya Bura also warned people to be very careful when washing dead bodies or corpses in their neighbourhoods while thanking the staff of the ministry, health partners, UMTH and others for their swift response and actions.