In the wake of resurgence of Lassa fever in the country, Nigeria has recorded seven confirmed cases of Lassa fever virus in the last three weeks as the virus spreads to six states.
The Chief Executive of Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, NCDC, Dr. Chikwe Ihekweazu disclosed this yesterday at the Pre-59th National Council on Health Meeting in Abuja.
Ihekweazu in a report on Polio/ Lassa fever containment in the country had said that in the last three weeks there has being seven cases of confirmed Lassa fever in six states namely Delta State, one ; Bauchi one; Plateau- two ; Gombe- 1; Rivers- 1 and Ondo –one.
He said that the NCDC has established Lassa fever working group to carry out investigations in affected states, supply medicines, and strengthen state disease surveillance and response committee and prepare an emergency preparedness among other functions.
Earlier Ihekweazu in a statement has disclosed that the NCDC and its partner the Nigerian Field Epidemiology and Laboratory Training Programme, NFELTP, has mobilised resources, to support the investigation and management of Lassa fever cases in the affected states.
The Minister of Health, Professor Issac Adewole, in his address at the occasion decried the two cases of children that were paralysed by the polio virus last month and a third case in a child in Monguno in Borno State.
Stating that the genetic sequencing the viruses show that the new cases are mostly closely linked to a wild polio virus strain last detected in Borno in 2011, Adewole said.
‘’This information is reassuring since the low-level transmission of the poliovirus is not unexpected, particularly in areas where it is difficult to reach children with the vaccine.’’
He said,’’ reaching these children requires vaccinating populations as they move in and out of inaccessible area and using local-level groups and organizations, such as religious institutions and community based organizations , to negotiate access for vaccination teams.
As a means of combating polio in affected areas, the minister said, ‘’ on the side of government, we have already budgeted for polio eradication efforts in the 2016 budget, we have since August 15, launched a massive vaccination campaign throughout the affected regions of Borno State and neighbouring states, with pans to have five more of such rounds s before the end of the year.

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