Posted by News Express | 4 August 2014 | 4,690 times
Nigeria’s Health Minister, Prof. Onyebuchi Chukwu, today confirmed a second case of Ebola in the country, less than two weeks after Liberian-American Patrick Sawyer died in a Lagos hospital days after arriving in Nigeria from Liberia.
Prof. Chukwu, who spoke in Abuja during the inauguration of a treatment research group for Ebola in Nigeria, said that test samples are pending for three other people who had shown symptoms of Ebola, and that authorities are trying to trace and quarantine others. The confirmed second case in Nigeria is a doctor who had helped treat Mr. Sawyer, who died July 25 on his way to Calabar for an international conference.
“Three others who participated in that treatment who are currently symptomatic have had their samples taken and hopefully by the end of today we should have the results of their own test,” Chukwu said.
According to the Minister, 70 people are now placed under surveillance while eight people would be quarantined on Monday for developing symptoms of the disease.
Apart from taking those steps, the government has also set up a treatment research group, that will carry out treatment research, receive and verify treatment claims as well as advise government on issues relating to Ebola virus in Nigeria.
The group which is co-chaired by Professor Shingu Gamaliel and Professor Innocent Ujah also has Maurice Iwu, a Professor of Pharmacognosy and officials from the Centre for Disease Control as members.
The minister advised the public to be wary of treatment claims including the use of bitter-cola as most treatment findings are still in their laboratory stages.
There is currently no known cure for Ebola virus in the world, but medical experts say efforts are on to find a remedy to the disease that has claimed over seven hundred since its out-break this year.
The emergence of a second case raises serious concerns about the infection control practices in Nigeria, and also raise the specter that more cases could emerge. It can take up to 21 days after exposure to the virus for symptoms to appear. They include fever, sore throat, muscle pains and headaches. Often nausea, vomiting and diarrhea follow, along with severe internal and external bleeding in advanced stages of the disease.
•Photo shows Health Minister Onyebuchi Chukwu.
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