Three persons have been confirmed dead as cholera outbreak hit Lagos.
The Lagos State Government in a prompt response has moved to stop the spread of the disease.
At
an emergency news conference at the Lagos State Government Secretariat,
Alausa, in Ikeja, Lagos on Wednesday, Commissioner for Health, Dr. Jide
Idris confirmed that 13 cases of cholera infection had been reported
and that three persons have died so far while some had been treated and
discharged from the hospital.
Idris
explained that investigations carried out by the ministry had revealed
that the suspected cases recorded were contracted from food sources such
as the African food salad popularly called ‘Abasha’, well-water
sources, especially in areas like Ikare community, Amuwo-Odofin Local
Government area and Badia area of Apapa Local Government area, and other
infected foods from food sellers, and other unhygienic habits.
Other suspected areas are Ajeromi, Lagos Island, Oshodi-Isolo and Surulere Local Government.
He
urged members of the public to be vigilant and report any suspected
case to the nearest health facility and the Directorate of Disease
Control in the state Ministry of Health.
Idris
described cholera as an acute contagious bacterial disease that is
characterized by severe form of sudden onset of profuse painless watery
stools, nausea and profuse vomiting.
He
added that cholera is acquired through the ingestion of an infective
dose of contaminated food or water and could be transmitted through many
mechanisms like direct or indirect contamination of water or food by
faeces of infected individuals.
“Cholera
should be suspected in any person who develops diarrhoea with or
without vomiting, weakness, restlessness, irritability, dry mucous
membrane, low blood pressure, leg cramps, excessive loss of body fluids
(dehydration) or dies from frequent stooling, hence, adequate measures
should be taken in order to reduce the risk of contracting the disease,”
he stated.
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The
commissioner listed measures to be taken to reduce the risk of
contracting the disease as washing of hands with soaps and water
frequently and thoroughly; boiling of water before drinking if the
source of the water was in doubts; washing of fruits and vegetables
thoroughly before eating; cooking of food thoroughly before eating;
disposing of waste material properly; and keeping of water containers
clean.
Idris
pointed out that in the case of suspected cholera, members of the
public should prepare oral rehydration solution (10 level teaspoonful of
sugar and one level teaspoonful of salt in two 35cl bottles); give the
suspect a lot of fluids to drink; keeps giving the suspect food as soon
as it could be tolerated; and thereafter visit the nearest hospital
whether the condition of the suspect improves or not.

He
urged health workers to be on the alert and report suspected outbreak
of more than five cases in their facilities to the State Ministry of
Health, saying that people could also call the following numbers:
08023169485 or 0802321333 for assistance.

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