6 October 2017
By Ikenna Amadi
The Federal Government has called for calm following the outbreak of a viral infection known as Monkey Pox in Bayelsa state.
The Health Minister, Prof Isaac Adewole disclosing this in a press release stated that the health Facilities in the state have been placed on red alert adding that affected patients are under observation with supportive treatments.
The Minister further explained that monkey pox is caused by a virus in the class of a group of viruses that included chicken pox and small pox.
‘Investigation is still on-going and our partners are working with us on this reported outbreak, while the NCDC team in Bayelsa State would give support the Minister said.
Adewole however said the disease could not be confirmed until laboratory investigations by World Health Organisation(WHO) referral laboratories in Dakar and Senegal confirm it.
He added that though the infection is mild, there is no known treatment and no preventive
vaccines hence the public should be at alert and avoid crowded places.
However the Minister also urged Nigerians to report any suspected case to the nearest health facility, while health workers are advised to maintain a high index of suspicion and observe safety precautions.
The symptoms of the deadly infection include headache, fever, back pains and in advanced cases, rashes bigger than those caused by chicken pox.
The general public is also advised to avoid eating dead animals, bush meat and particularly monkeys.