Apprehension has gripped Lafia, the capital of Nasarawa State, as residents in the city are beginning to place restrictions on certain areas of the town believed to have been invaded by Lassa fever disease.
One of the residents who spoke to newsmen on condition of anonymity, said that “I am already afraid with outbreak of the disease and I had to leave my area with my family as no one knows how the disease broke into our neighborhood.”
He added that “one person has died of the disease in our area and only God knows how many people would be quarantined in the area as a result of the outbreak.”
Another resident, Judith Bola, vowed that if the government refuses to swing into quick action to bring the disease under control, she would leave the state with her children.
Earlier, the State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Daniel Iya , confirmed that four persons have lost their lives to Lassa fever outbreak out of the 16 suspected cases recorded in the state.
The Commissioner, explained that the index case for the current outbreak was recorded in November 2016 and died a day later, while the three others with confirmed cases died between Jan. 13 and 15.
“The last three victims were discovers to be relatives of the index case, 36 others, who had contact with the victims are being followed up”, he said.
Iya said the state rapid response team for disease outbreaks had stepped up sensitization campaigns for health workers on their index of suspicion to check the spread of the disease.
The commissioner, however, encouraged health workers in the state to always follow standard procedures in taking care of patients in the hospital and urged members of the public to report cases of the fever promptly to the nearest hospital.