Six more states in the country have reported the case of “Monkey Pox” thus bringing the total number of suspected cases so far to 31. Recall that the case was first reported in Bayelsa. The states that now have the virus are Bayelsa, Cross River, Lagos, Rivers, Ekiti, Akwa Ibomand Ogun. The authorities of Nigerian Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) said samples had been collected from each of the suspected cases for laboratory confirmation. As at press time, they still await the results.
NCDC’s CEO, Dr. Chikwe Ihekweazu, however stated that no deaths had been recorded as a result of the virus. He also added that it remained unlikely that many of the suspected cases were actually “Monkey Pox.” He said, “All the suspected cases are currently receiving appropriate medical care and the patients are all improving clinically in their various states. The Federal Ministry of Health, through the NCDC, is supporting the affected states to ensure the outbreak is brought under control and to limit further spread. NCDC has activated an Emergency Operation Centre (EOC) to coordinate the outbreak’s investigation and response across the affected states.”
Providing more clarifications on the development, he stated, “The EOC is currently supporting state ministries of health in their response to the outbreak through active case finding, epidemiological investigation and contact tracing. Measures have been put in place to ensure effective sample collection and testing to enable laboratory confirmation. “Risk communication activities have been heightened to advise the public on preventive measures. All 36 states and the FCT have been notified for preparedness.”
Meanwhile, the Lagos State Government has confirmed the outbreak of the virus in the state, adding that two suspected cases had been recorded. The state Commissioner for Health, Dr. Jide Idris, disclosed this at a news conference, where he disclosed that two suspected cases were currently being investigated in the state. He urged members of the public to be vigilant and report any suspected cases of the disease to the nearest public health facility or the Directorate of Disease Control in the state ministry of health. As part of the proactive measures, Lagos government has said called the residents to call the Lagos State Ministry of Health should they suspect any case through these mobile lines: 08037170614 and 09087106072.
“The state government has mobilised the Disease Surveillance Officers in the 57 LGAs and LCDAs in the state and health workers in both public and private health facilities have been placed on high alert,” Idris said. Idris called on residents of the state to remain calm and go about their businesses without fear, as the government had put in place adequate measures to effectively prevent and control the spread of the infection to Lagos.