Twenty persons have been quarantined in Borno State as Lassa fever spread to the state.
Briefing newsmen on Wednesday in Maiduguri, the state Commissioner for Health, Dr. Haruna Mshelia, said a 32-year-old female (name withheld), a resident of Zabarmari village in Jere Local Government Area of the state, had been diagnosed of the disease.
Lassa fever is an acute viral haemorrhagic illness that is transmitted to humans via contact with food or household items contaminated with rodent’s urine or faeces.
Lassa fever was first discovered in Lassa town in Askira/Uba Local Government Area of Borno State about half a century ago.
During the news conference, Mshelia disclosed that the patient became ill last week and was admitted at a government hospital in Maiduguri, where a sample of her blood was taken to Lagos for test.
The result of the test has been released and it shows that the patient tested positive to Lassa fever,
The commissioner, however, said the patient was responding to treatment.
He added that the ministry had summoned stakeholders including traditional rulers to a meeting to sensitise them and the public on the need to ensure proper sanitation and avoid eating rodents, especially rats.
The commissioner noted that already, the ministry had mobilised its personnel who visited Zabarmari, an outskirts of Maiduguri metropolis, where over 20 people were identified to have had contact with the patient.
Mshelia said those identified had already been quarantined.