The Lagos Ministry of Health, has validated the state’s index Lassa fever patient as an indigene of Ebonyi State, who over the weekend arrived at the Nigerian Law School in Lagos.
Mr Tunbosun Ogunbamwo, the state health ministry’s director of public affairs, made the disclosure to journalists on Wednesday, while assuring residents of the ability of the ministry to “comfortably contained” the outbreak.
Although, other biodata of the patient are yet to be released by the ministry, Ogunbamwo only said the index patient was from Ebonyi State.
He further explained that the patient was in Lagos for a brief programme when he visited the Nigerian Law School Clinic to complain of a fever.
“He said he was feeling funny. This made people direct him to the Law School Clinic.
“When the ailment became complicated, he was referred to Lagos University Teaching Hospital, where Lassa fever was diagnosed.”
“Consequently, people within the clinic have been confined, including the nurse who attended to him,” the source said.
He said that while it was not yet clear whether the patient arrived by air or by road, there are concerted efforts to identify those he associated with in the last 24 hours of his arrival.
The Lagos State Commissioner for Health, Prof. Akin Abayomi had earlier assured the public that he and his team are working assiduously in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Health and the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control to contain the disease.
Abayomi, who said the patient is currently in isolation and receiving treatment at the Lagos University Teaching Hospital, LUTH, urged residents to remain calm as the situation is under control, saying routine contact tracing, an exercise often necessary to curb the spread of the disease, has commenced in earnest to contain the spread.
According to him: “The Lagos State Ministry of Health, LSMOH, through its Epidemiology, Biosecurity and Global Health Directorate has commenced contact tracing to determine those who may have been infected at the Nigerian Law School, and those who might have traveled along with him, while other surveillance and biosecurity strategies have been stepped up to prevent any further spread. The LSMOH is also in active collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Health, and the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, NCDC to contain and prevent the spread of the infection in Lagos”.
In view of the development, the commissioner emphasised the need for members of the public to ensure and maintain adequate personal hygiene and environmental sanitation at all times as part of prevention and control measures against the spread of the disease in the state.