By Vincent Ujumadu

ONE case of monkey pox has reportedly been recorded in Anambra State.

The state government said yesterday that one out of the two suspected cases of the disease reported in the state was confirmed positive.

The state Commissioner for Health, Dr Afam Obidike, at a news conference in Awka, said the state had been on alert mode following the report of the disease early this year across some states in the country.

He said the state emergency preparedness and response team had put relevant surveillance measures in place towards ending the spread of the outbreak.

He said: “Few weeks ago, two suspected cases of monkey pox were reported in Anambra East, Onitsha and Oyi local government areas, out of which the case from Anambra East LGA was confirmed positive.

“The case is currently at the isolation centre of the Nnamdi Azikiwe University Teaching Hospital, Nnewi, where he is receiving treatment and recovering.

“In light of the above, Governor Charles Soludo immediately declared the incident an outbreak and an emergency preparedness and response committee meeting was immediately convened on Wednesday.

“The meeting was attended by relevant stakeholders, including World Health Organisation team and the United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF). They are providing necessary assistance to the state

“Planning for immediate response to the outbreak and surveillance, Laboratory, Case management, Risk Communication and Community Engagement, Infection Prevention and Control and Safe Burial pillars, were activated, ”.

Obidike said the state government had commenced the training of health personnel and response officers on enhanced active case search, sample collections and Monkey pox management as well as intensify public awareness.

He, however, urged residents not to panic and report to the hospital for proper examination whenever they notice rashes on their skin.

“Once it is established at the hospital, the patient will be taken to our Isolation centres for treatment. We have activated all our Isolation centres in the state.

“We urge residents to remain calm and stay safe as we mitigate this outbreak of Monkeypox in the state. We shall overcome again, ” he added.

The WHO coordinator in Anambra State, Dr Adamu Abdulnasir said the organisation would support the state in terms of outbreak response and surveillance and capacity building.

He said: “Since we heard about the two suspected cases, WHO has supported in the areas of sample collection and taking the sample to the lab. When the results came out, we carried out contact tracing as well as case and risks management.

“in Nigeria so far, we have recorded 41 cases of Monkey pox with one death. The Government is taking proactive measure to bring this outbreak to a stop and sensitize people on how to prevent and protect themselves”.

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