Nigerian government reactivates Ebola response mechanism

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Following the reemergence of Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) in Liberia, the federal government of Nigeria has directed states across the country to raise their alert level and report all suspected cases to the Health Ministry.

This directive was contained in a statement issued by Director, Press, at the Federal Ministry of Health, Ayo Adesugba, who also urged Nigerians not to panic. Instead, he urged citizens and all residents to be wary and vigilant.

He said: ‘Members of the public are advised to observe basic hygiene and report any suspected case to the nearest health facility.

‘It must be noted that the main symptoms of the EVD are fever, severe headache, abdominal pain, vomiting and diarrhoea. Patients, in some cases, also have neurological symptoms of becoming confused and restless.’

To address the challenges of the development in Liberia, he announced that the Federal Ministry of Health is reactivating its response mechanism and increasing the level of its alertness.

‘It would be recalled that new cases of the EVD had been reported in Liberia. This means that the country, which was certified Ebola-free by the World Health Organization (WHO) on 9th May 2015, has witnessed a resurgence of the disease,’ the director said.

A 17-year-old boy from a village near the Liberian capital died of Ebola. He had no history of travelling out of Liberia and no history of coming into contact with any known EVD case. The boy has since been buried but Liberian health officials are worried that he may have transmitted the virus to many other people who came into contact with him.

‘The resurgence of EVD in Liberia confirms that the EVD is still circulating in that country and transmission from person to person is possible,’ Adesugba said in the statement.

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