As part of efforts to cut spread of Lassa virus, Ondo State has concluded plans to procure Lassa detecting machine to aid early detection of the virus in patients who contacted the disease.
It would be recalled that the state recorded fresh Lassa virus case and quarantine five persons who had contacted the first contact.
Commissioner for Health, Dr. Dayo Adeyanju, who disclosed this to journalists at a sensitization programme on the deadly disease in Owo, affirmed that the needed fund to purchase the machine has been made available by the State government.
Adeyanju said “Before we send patient to Irrhua Specialist hospital, it takes time, so as we speak now, we have funds available to procure our own equipment. We are hoping that within the next couple of weeks, that place will be ready, so that we can do our own test.
“We were waiting for the Federal Government before, but as a responsible government, I think it is better for us to go ahead to ensure that we are able to perform the test and treat our patients”, he added.
According to him, the expected machine is not only to detect Lassa fever, but also capable of detecting other diseases.
He emphasized the need to allay the fear of Owo residents, by acquitting them with the effort of the government in curbing the spread of the disease, hence the purpose of the town hall sensitization programme.
His words, “It is important to allay the fear of the people, particularly the fact that the first case was detected at FMC Owo, there is tendency for them to be scared. We need to sensitise Owo/Ose people and tell them what exactly they need to do to protect themselves from contacting Lassa fever and let them know what government effort is”.
Adeyanju, who assured the public that the situation of Lassa fever, is under control in the State, disclosed that the affected patient is responding to treatment at Irrhua.
He charged traditional rulers to further reach out to their communities through the use of town criers and pass the information to the people.
He therefore appealed to the people of the State to maintain a clean environment devoid of every rats, and ensure that their foodstuffs are well kept, and well cooked before consumption to complement government’s effort.
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