The Lagos State Government has reiterated the need for citizens to ensure and maintain adequate personal and environmental hygiene at all times as part of precautionary measures to prevent the outbreak of infectious diseases like monkeypox which was recently reported in the state.
The Commissioner for Health, Professor Akin Abayomi, stated this at a biosecurity update meeting held earlier in the week on the situation of Monkey Pox disease in the state.
He urged residents to observe the highest possible standards of personal and environmental hygiene especially through soap and running water, as well as pay attention to environmental exposure.
Abayomi while explaining that monkeypox is a rare viral infection in animals which can be transmitted to man and caused by monkeypox virus, noted that the symptoms in human is similar to those seen in chickenpox patients although less severe.
He further explained that monkeypox can be transmitted by direct contact with the blood; through bodily fluid; mucosa lesions of infected monkeys; and through giant rats and squirrels which are major reservoirs of the virus.
The commissioner disclosed that three suspected cases of monkeypox were reported by health facilities in the past one month noting that the cases were positive for Monkey Pox as revealed by reports of laboratory investigation.
Abayomi said that the patients were treated at the specialised infectious disease isolation centre of the Mainland Hospital, Yaba and have since recovered and been discharged.
Also, he disclosed that the close contacts and family members of affected persons were actively monitored for 21 days for any development of signs and symptoms of monkeypox and none of the contacts developed any symptoms.
The commissioner called on residents to be calm while assuring them that there was no cause to panic as the state government in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Health through the Centre for Disease Control are maintaining relevant surveillance activities in all local government areas to prevent an outbreak of the disease.
He advised health workers to ensure that they take universal safety precautions when dealing with patients, stressing that appropriate personal protective clothings must be worn when attending to cases of contagious infectious disease.
Abayomi said, “health workers are advised to observe universal safety precautions when dealing with patients and report any suspected case of monkeypox to the Medical Officer of Health in their local government or the Directorate of Disease Control through these lines: 08023169485 and 08023377487”.