From Ahmad Mohammed, Bauchi
The Bauchi State Primary Health Care Development Agency has warned that all lassa fever cases should be transported in an ambulance and not in a commercial car because it can be transmitted to those in the vehicle.
This is as the agency has confirmed seven lassa fever cases in the state in 2020.
The Executive Secretary of the Agency, Dr. Rilwan Mohammed, who disclosed this to journalists at a Press Conference in Bauchi over the weekend, said that the suspected cases have now risen to 22.
Mohammed said “the last time we told you that we had 15 suspected cases but as at now, the suspected cases have increased to 22. I also told you last time that we had three confirmed cases, four new cases have been added bringing the total number of confirmed cases in the state to seven”
He said “The seven new confirmed cases this year are as follows: Bauchi has two, Tafawa Balewa has two, while Kirfi, Alkaleri and Toro have one case each.
Executive Secretary said “We have two more suspected cases in Giade Local Government and one in Azare, Katagum LGA. We are planning on what to do with Azare because it is close to Kano state and since there is an outbreak there (in Kano), we are now afraid,”
Mohammed said that lassa fever was not new in the state said that all the suspected cases have been sent to the National Disease Control Center in Abuja for testing and authentication.
He said that no death has so far been recorded in the state since the outside this year.
Mohammed added that there was a suspected case that was brought “there from Giade and the patient was bleeding, so they were confused. We in Bauchi are not panicking, we are trained and this is not new to us in the state, so we know what to do.”
He said that Bauchi State has been helping states like Gombe, Plateau, Kano, on what to do with the new cases in their states.
He said that the agency will soon embark on an aggressive campaign through radio and television jingles and other media to sensitize the public on all preventive measures that they need to undertake to stay safe and prevent the disease from spreading.
Mohammed called on the public not to put emphasis only of rat to human transmission saying that although it (rat) is that initial infection but “most of the infections you get today, are not from rats but from human to human and contact with an infected person must be prevented.”