From Mohammed Salisu in Sokoto
Sokoto State Health Commissioner, Dr Ali Inname, says no case of the dreaded Lassa Fever, anthrax or any other emerging diseases like Anthrax or Coronavirus is recorded in Sokoto State.
He explained that, the Ministry decided to take proactive measures by informing the teaming populace of the state on the above diseases .
This, he added, is to equip the state with the necessary measures for prevention and early detection of possible cases, to prevent spread in the event of any.
The Commissioner for Health, Dr. Mohammad Ali Inname disclosed this in Sokoto, Monday, when he addressed a Press Conference on the outbreak of Lassa fever in Nigeria and other outbreaks around the world, like Anthrax and Coronabirus.
According to Dr Inname, the state has taken the following measure to curb the situation which include the activation of State Emergency Preparation to and Response Team (EPR), activation of Rapid Response Team (RRT) and the procurement of drugs and other consumables.
In the same vein, the Health Commissioner added that, the state has intensified surveillance activities, as well as the prepositioning of ambulance for patient transport.
He averred, ” other measures include the engagement of all relevant stake holders, State agencies, Usmanu Danfodiyo University Teaching Hospital (UDUTH), Sokoto, Nigeria Medical Association, WHO, UNICEF, MSF, CDC, AFENET, Rotary International, Traditional leaders, Religious leaders and the Media.
” Others are the production and airing of jingles, sensitization of health workers, production and distribution of IEC materials and the establishment of burial protocol committee.
” It is very important at this point to all these measures would not have been possible without the support of the Governor of Sokoto state Rt. Honorable Aminu Waziri Tambuwal.
” I would also like to appreciate all the members of EPR and RRT teams, the partners supporting the state, the media and people in the state for cooperating with Government in all matter. ”
Dr Inname further stated that one of the mandates of the Ministry is to ensure the health and well-being of all people living in the state, irrespective of their religious, ethic, political or any other background.
He added, “to fulfill that mandate, the Ministry has to keep the public aware of all public health happening around the global and the protective measure based on available evidence.
” To this end, the Ministry wants to inform the general public that there is an outbreak of Lassa fever in Kano and other States in Nigeria, including suspected cases in Zamfara state recently.
” Similarly, Niger Republic is currently having some suspected cases of Anthrax and China reported a new virus, Coronavirus, which is spreading to other Asian countries and Europe.
” However, no case is recorded in Sokoto of any of the above diseases and God’s willing, we will not have any.
“The Ministry decided to take proactive measures by informing the teaming populace of the state on the above diseases and equip the state with necessary measure for prevention and early detection of possible cases to prevent spread in the event of any.”
He urged health care workers to strictly observe universal precaution as stipulated and consider every patient as potential risk.
Dr Inname continued,” this is not to underrate or discriminate anyone, but to save the worker and the public.
” To the general public, they should clear Surroundings to get rid of rodents, food stores to be secured to prevent rodent access, cooked foods and water sources to be secured.
” They should also wash hands regularly with soap and water, observe cough etiquette, stop eating and trading bush meat, especially rat, limit contact with animals unless necessary, as well as, report to hospital early when you observe any of the above symptom or unusual condition.”
The Commissioner concludes, ” the state is monitoring the situation closely and everybody should go about doing his normal daily activities with no panic.”