Following the fresh outbreak of Lassa fever in the Northern senatorial district of Ondo State, the State government and the management of Achievers’ University, Owo have put in place some proactive measures to curb the spread of the deadly disease.
Three people had been identified to be hit with the fever in the ancient town of Owo, in Owo local government area of the state with two others from Akoko South West local government area of the state.
Speaking on the development, the Vice Chancellor of Achievers University, Prof. Samuel Ibiyemi, denied the outbreak of the Lassa fever within the university environment but confirmed that one of the students has been hit with the fever.
Ibiyemi however disclosed that the affected student was not living within the students hostel but lived with her parents in Owo town, saying the fever was imported from the town to the academic community.
The VC said “one of the student of the university reported to the university health center for treatment. However, she was not responding to treatment and as usual, had to be transferred to the FMC where she was diagnosed of having Lassa fever symptoms. She has since been stabilized and will be discharged anytime soon.”
According to him, investigation carried out by the school revealed that the affected student contacted the disease from outside the school, saying “none of her roommates and friends who have been screened, developed symptoms of the ailment.”
Ibiyemi however said that the management of the institution has decided to give the students of the university a three-week mid- semester break from Tuesday 20th June to allay the fears of the parents who have been calling to know the welfare of their children.
He also said the management of the school has concluded all arrangements to carry out precautionary measures against the outbreak of the disease in the school.
He said “This will afford the agitated parents to see their children and rest assured that they ate safe and sound. The break will also enable the university to carry out necessary precaution measures before the students resume back to school on July 9, 2017. ”
He said some health officials from the Federal Medical Center (FMC) Owo, had visited the school to educate the students and staff of the institution on how to guide against the disease, while he also disclosed that a collaboration has been established between the school and the ministry of health in the state.
“The management takes the overall wellbeing of its staff and students seriously. Nothing is therefore, spared to ensure this.” the VC said.
However, the Permanent Secretary in the ministry of Health, Dr Taiye Oni disclosed that out of the four cases recorded in the state, two were recorded in Owo metropolis and another two in Akoko South West local government area of the state.
He explained that the latest Lassa fever occurrence was coming at unusual time but said the state government has reactivated its disease notification and surveillance mechanism.
He advised the people to properly store their foods, especially grains and also “to give priority to personal and environmental hygiene at this critical time”
“Government is doing its best to contain the recorded cases by isolating the patients, to prevent further spread, and we have embarked on aggressive contact tracing, sensitization of the people not just in Owo and Ose but across the state on preventing and precautionary measures.
“Most times, we have always run to Irrua Specialist Hospital in Edo state but the facility is already overwhelmed with so many cases across the country which is why we are collaborating with the Federal Medical Center, Owo in handling the recorded cases.
“We are supporting FMC Owo with protective kits, injections and tablets and just as we appeal to people with cases of me occurring fever to visit the nearest government hospital for necessary attention.” he said.