Lassa Fever 'We have contained patient,' LUTH CMD allays fears

He said that medical personnel from both the Federal and the Lagos State Governments had been working together to bring the situation under control.

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Prof. Christopher Bode, Chief Medical Director (CMD), Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH), Idi-Araba, Lagos State, on Saturday allayed the fears of the members of the public following a confirmed case of Lassa fever patient at the hospital.

Bode addressing newsmen in Lagos said that the patient was responding to treatment at the isolation ward of LUTH.

He said that medical personnel from both the Federal and the Lagos State Governments had been working together to bring the situation under control.

Bode said that the first case of Lassa fever was diagnosed at the hospital on Jan. 15.

According to him, a 25-year-old student of the Ahmadu Bello University, (ABU) in Zaria, Kaduna State, (names withheld) who had contacted the virus came to visit his parents at Ifako-Ijaiye area of Lagos State.

‘’He was admitted in a private hospital at Ifako-Ijaiye on Jan. 9 and was transferred to LUTH on Jan.15 on account of developing symptoms of fever, sore throat and body ache.

‘’We ran a blood test which confirmed that he had contacted Lassa fever virus, and we were able to put together a package within one hour in response to the treatment of the patient.

`` We informed all management teams and relevant authorities including the Minister of Health, the Lagos State Government, and the Lagos State Epidemiology team, who sent the appropriate treatment last night (Friday).

``The patient is responding to treatment at the isolation ward,'' he said.

Bode said that all the general hospitals in Lagos had already been sensitised and prepared for the treatment of any Lassa fever patient.

He said that clinicians and experts from both LUTH and the Lagos State Teaching Hospital (LASUTH) would assist and guide in the treatment of the virus in other general hospitals.

Bode said that, in maintaining the safety of all health workers, people who had come in contact with the patient were being traced.

The LUTH CMD, however, commended LASUTH management for the quick delivery of drugs within an hour to assist in the treatment of the patient.

Also speaking , Prof. Ismail Abdul-Salam, the Lagos State Epidemiologist, said that no fewer than 100 people were under observation due to the personal contacts they had with the Lassa fever patient.

‘’Patients, who were on admission as at the time the Lassa fever patient was brought in, are still being quarantined now.

''We are also on the trace of those that have been discharged before he was transferred to LUTH.

‘’ Health workers are also being quarantined in the hospital up until this morning and also tracing contacts of all relatives of the patient.

‘’ The surveillance officer and contact tracing team are there to monitor them. They will communicate with them daily and check their temperature, morning and evening and the symptoms need to be monitored.

‘’ We will continue to do our public enlightenment, we have sent information to all the primary and secondary health facilities across the state,’’ he said.

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