75-year-old Woman Dies of Lassa Fever in Delta

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By Omon-Julius Onabu in Asaba

A 75-year old woman has died from the dreaded Lassa Fever in Delta State, a statement from the state ministry of information confirmed yesterday afternoon.

The statement, which alerted residents in Delta State to the fact “that a case of Lassa fever has been reported in the state leading to the death of a 75-year old woman”, was signed by Mr. Paul Osahor, Director of information in the ministry.

When the victim took ill, she was taken to the General Hospital, Umuolu in Ndokwa East Local Government Area on August 18, 2018, but was referred to the Central Hospital, Kwale in Ndokwa West, the following day, and from there was further referred to the Federal Medical Centre (FMC), Asaba on August, 2018, the statement revealed.

According to the statement, “At the FMC Asaba, the victim’s blood sample was taken to Irrua Specialist Hospital, Edo State, for test but unfortunately she died on August 29, 2018, the same day the hospital in Irrua received the lab result which was confirmed positive to the Lassa virus.

“Accordingly, residents in the state are advised not to panic, as the Ministry of Health officials are on top of the situation, doing contact tracing on those who had contact with the victim.

“Findings indicate that it is over 21 days since the victim presented at the hospital in Umuolu and Kwale and no case has been discovered, however, contact tracing is ongoing at FMC, Asaba.

“As part of safety measures to curb the spread, residents in the state are advised to cultivate good personal hygiene, clean and fumigate their environment, promote community hygiene to prevent rodents from entering homes and protect food from rats and to report any case of strange fever to the nearest hospital.”

Lassa fever is a viral hemorrhagic fever that is caused by the urine and faeces of a species of rat when they get in contact with food, water and human wounds with their faeces and urine.