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Published On: Mon, Sep 1st, 2014

Suspected Ebola patient dies in Abuja

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  • FCT administration allays fear
  • Another doctor tests positive in P/H

By Doyin Ojosipe & Stanley Onyekwere

A patient suspected to have Ebola-like symptoms has died in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory, before his test results could be confirmed.

This was disclosed in a statement signed Monday by the Head, Public Relations Unit, Health and Human Services Secretariat (HHSS) of FCTA, Mr. Badaru Yakassai

FCTA however advised residents not to panic as the first suspected case of Ebola Virus Disease in the Territory has not been confirmed.

This is coming on the heels of suspected manifestation of Ebola symptoms in a patient on admission at the Accident and Emergency unit, of the Family Medicine unit of Asokoro District hospital, Abuja, last week.

Similarly, it was gathered that there was another suspected case of the disease at the NICON luxury hotels, but was quickly dismissed as a mere rumour.

Giving the advice yesterday, the FCT Administration through its Health and Human Services Secretariat (HHSS), said strict infection control measures were immediately instituted to verify the case.

It disclosed that blood sample was then taken to the designated FCT Ebola testing laboratory, which happens to be within the hospital (Asokoro) premises.

Also, list of all Medical staff that had come into contact with the patient has been compiled and they are all under surveillance.

“The epidemiology unit of Public Health Department of the HHSS was notified and their response was immediate.

“The case also served as a drill case to test the preparedness of the Hospital to manage and contain Ebola disease.

“The accident and emergency unit was temporarily relocated to the General outpatient unit (GOPD),” the Secretariat quoted the Medical Director of Asokoro Hospital, Dr. Abubakar Ahmadu, in a statement made available to newsmen.

Continuing the statement adds: “Clinical assessment however did not reveal any history of contact or travel.  However in view of the high index of suspicion, isolation and strict infection control measures were continued and the unit was condoned off.

“Unfortunately, the patient died the next day, Friday 29th August 2014. The general public is advised not to panic as the first case of Ebola in the Territory has not been confirmed at the Hospital and the measures that have been put in place are only precautionary in the interest of public safety.”

Although, the statement further disclosed that the result of the Ebola testing was being expected from the Laboratory yesterday, but as at press time there were no information about it.

Minister of Health, Prof. Onyebuchi Chukwu briefing newsmen yesterday said that Nigeria has recorded 6 deaths from the Ebola disease so far, while 17 confirmed cases have been recorded, including the index case of Ebola outbreak in Nigeria.

He also said, 11 patients have been successfully managed and have fully recovered; adding that out of the 11, 7 were managed in Lagos, with standard treatment, while 1 was managed in Port Harcourt.

He also said that there are only 2 more patients still receiving treatment at the isolation center in Lagos.

In Port Harcourt a female doctor who was on admission in same hospital where the doctor who died earlier of the virus in the state was being treated has been confirmed positive.

The infected doctor is now being treated at the isolation ward in Rivers state.

The case brings the number of confirmed Ebola cases in the state to three including that of the late medical doctor and the ECOWAS staff who brought the virus to the state.

During a meeting of the National Emergency Council on Ebola out-break in Nigeria on Monday, Professor Chukwu, said that a few more cases of the Ebola Virus Disease were expected in Rivers State.

He told the gathering of states health commissioners that they should continue to make more efforts to ensure that the disease was contained.

The Minister said, “Great vigilance is required particularly at our ports of entry to ensure we do not receive cases of EVD from other sources other than Mr. Sawyer.

He said more locations for diagnose have been made.

The locations are: NCDC laboratory, Asokoro, Abuja; NCDC laboratory at Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH); NCDC laboratory at University College Hospital, Ibadan; Irrua Specialist Teaching

Hospital Irrua, Edo State; Virology laboratory of Redeemers University, Ogun State and The Irrua based mobile laboratory, which has now been relocated from Enugu to Port Harcourt.

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