The Oyo State Government said on Tuesday that it had taken proactive measures against the monkey pox disease  through ongoing surveillance, active case searches and sensitisation initiatives.

Dr Taiwo Oladipo, the Deputy Director of Public Health in the state Ministry of Health,  disclosed this while speaking with Our reporter on Tuesday in Ibadan.

Our reporter reports that the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) had on Monday declared that 31 suspected cases of monkey pox had so far been reported in seven states.

Oyo State was, however, not  included in those said to have recorded cases of the viral disease.

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But Oladipo said the ministry had  directed health officials across the 33 local governments and relevant agencies in the state to step up surveillance processes.

“We have informed all the local governments to designate areas within their facilities to isolate suspicious case to curtail any outbreak in the state.

“Health workers have been urged to apply universal basic precautions in patients’ care and use the standard protocols of management and reporting of suspected cases.

“We urged the good people of the state not to panic and be assured of the readiness of the state government to safeguard their health,” he said.

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Oladipo said that the state currently had ongoing public awareness exercise in  communities and the media to sensitise the residents on causes and symptoms of  monkey pox.

“Our Disease Surveillance and Notification Officers are engaged in public enlightenment programmes and sensitisation as part of our proactive measures.

“Residents are urged to maintain good hygiene practices most importantly adopt hand washing as a preventive measure.

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“Wash your hands regularly,  particularly before eating and after coming in contact with faeces.

“Monkey pox is a rare viral disease transmitted from animals to humans;  people who are in the habit of eating live game are predisposed to contacting this disease.

“In consideration of the disease outbreak, it is best if people don’t eat live  game for now or if they must, it must be properly cooked before eating.

“So far,  no case of  fatality has been recorded in the states with the reported incidence,” he said. (NAN)