By Gabriel Enogholase – Benin
Edo State Government has disclosed that it has intensified efforts to curb the spread of Lassa fever in the state against the backdrop of the resurgence of the viral disease across endemic states in the country.
A statement in Benin on Wednesday by the Special Adviser to the Governor on Media and Communication Strategy, Mr. Crusoe Osagie, explained that the state government’s efforts were being led by the Deputy Governor, Mr. Philip Shaibu.
He stated that the state government has a robust response system that is activated when cases are reported saying that the government has over the years invested in the strengthening of hospitals to manage the viral disease.
He said, “The state has a standing Lassa Fever Committee that coordinates efforts to stem the spread of the viral disease into the state. They also serve to manage cases where such are reported.
“We have over the years worked to equip the Institute of Lassa Fever Research and Control at the Irrua Specialist Teaching Hospital with four dialysis machines, ventilators, personal protective equipment and drugs required for effective treatment of victims and management of Lassa fever cases.”
He disclosed that the committee was already at work with the recent cases reported in neighbouring Ondo and Delta States.
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The governor’s aide said enlightenment programmes are being held across the state to sensitize the people against the spread of the disease.
“Sensitization programmes have commenced across the 18 local government areas of the state. This is coordinated by the committee. We are also keen on leveraging the partnership with the World Health Organization (WHO) for efficient contact tracing and monitoring so as to be pro-active in handling the crisis”, he said.