The much dreaded deadly disease Lassa fever has arrived the Niger Delta region by striking Delta state, a key state in the Niger Delta. Information reaching our newsroom is that more than five persons have been admitted to the hospital out of which one lost his life. The incident has thrown the entire Delta state health sector into panic and confusion as efforts are intensifying to curtail its spread and bring it under control.

A source from the state ministry of health who pleaded anonymity disclosed that the five patients are held in a medical facility outside the state capital Asaba. It was also learned that the disease surprisingly re-emerged last week after the state health officials thought it was defeated and eradicated.

However, the Delta State Commissioner for health Mr. Nicolas Azinge insisted that only two cases of the dreaded disease have been confirmed in the state, reassuring the public of safety. He advised the state residents not to panic insisting that the state health sector was well equipped and prepared to contain the disease just like the last time it emerged.

According to the Health Commissioner “So far two confirmed cases of Lassa Fever disease has been recorded in the State which was brought to the Federal Medical Center, Asaba for medical attention. The first case brought to the FMC, Asaba was that of a 43-year-old male resident in the state who was successfully treated and later referred to Irrua Specialist Hospital, Edo State and is responding to treatment,”

The Commissioner, Mr. Aringe further revealed that the second person, a lady brought to the state suspected of contracting the disease died and was from Anambra State. He disclosed that his counterpart in Anambra State has been notified and the corpse will be handed over to his staff so that the deceased would be given a proper burial without exposing more persons related to her to grave danger.

On efforts made by the Delta state government to contain and eradicate the disease in the state, Azinge revealed that all primary health centres in the state have been activated to prepare and contain any emerging fresh case before referral to the medical centre or hospital. He urged the public to report any case of malaria or typhoid fever that is not responding to treatment as it might likely test positive for Lassa fever.

Rats Contamination a Source of Lassa Fever

As part of a collaborative effort of government to contain and limit the spread of the disease, Mr. Azinge on behalf of the government donated personal protective items to the management of the Federal Management Centre, Asaba and other notable hospitals and clinic within Asaba and Warri all in Delta State.