Here’s how to keep yourself safe from Lassa fever as first case is recorded in Lagos State

The deadly Lassa Fever has been confirmed in several states across the country, and the first victim in Lagos State has now been confirmed.

According to Punch, the state commissioner for Health, Akin Abayomi revealed that the patient is currently in isolation at the Lagos University Teaching Hospital.

Abayomi ensured Lagosians that the case is under control, urging people to be calm and not panic. He also stated that the government is doing everything to control the spread of the disease in the state.

He also spoke on how people can protect themselves from the disease, stressing that it is spread through rats.

“Members of the public are further advised to avoid contact with rats, to always cover their food and water properly, cook all their food thoroughly, as well as block all holes in the septic tanks and holes through which rats can enter the house and clear rat hideouts within the premises.

“Isolation wards have been prepared to manage suspected and confirmed cases, drugs, and other materials have also been prepositioned at designated facilities while health workers have been placed on red alert and community sensitisation activities intensified,” Abayomi said.

It is also important to note that the disease can be spread through human contact. Direct contact with the blood, urine, faeces, and other body fluids of a person infected with Lassa Fever can expose people to the virus.

Health care workers are also not safe from the virus, and the World Health Organization has advised practices to prevent the spread of the virus.

“Health-care workers caring for patients with suspected or confirmed Lassa fever should apply extra infection control measures to prevent contact with the patient’s blood and body fluids and contaminated surfaces or materials such as clothing and bedding.

“When in close contact (within 1 metre) of patients with Lassa fever, health-care workers should wear face protection (a face shield or a medical mask and goggles), a clean, non-sterile long-sleeved gown, and gloves (sterile gloves for some procedures).

“Laboratory workers are also at risk. Samples taken from humans and animals for investigation of Lassa virus infection should be handled by trained staff and processed in suitably equipped laboratories under maximum biological containment conditions.”

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