Yesterday this post went up detailing the vague information known about the unknown rapid killer disease in Irele Ondo State Nigeria. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO) spokesperson Gregory Hartl who spoke to the AFP, the disease attacks the central nervous system with symptoms such as headaches, blurred vision, loss of sight, loss of consciousness and kills the patient within 24 hrs.
The Ondo State Commissioner of Health Dr. Dayo Adeyanju confirmed that those affected began to show symptoms between 13-15 April. There are 20 recorded cases, 17 have died and the 3 living have been contacted and detailed history taken, but they have not been quarantined. Local health officials and the WHO are now in Irele to try to identify this disease. There have been no reported cases in the last 17 hours. According to a press release by the the state ministry of health, the following steps have been taken:
1. Contact Tracing Committee – the committee is already tracing and establishing contacts with those already exposed to patients or dead bodies and monitoring them for possible manifestation of any of the symptoms.
2. Case Management Committee – this is made up of health personnel and volunteers already trained to attend to medical emergencies of this nature, they are to ensure safe and proper management of new and existing cases of the illness. They are required to also train health workers in Irele.
3. Laboratory/Forensic Committee – to establish the etiological/causative agent for the strange illness and ensure safe disposal of corpses.
4. Community Education & Mobilization Committee – intensify mass education and sensitization of the community and the state in a way that will not constitute public health hazard.
5. Print, Electronic & Social Media Sensitization Committee – to make progress report of unfolding developments available in a timely manner to the world to dispel rumours that may lead to widespread panic and fear.
These and other measures have been put in place to ensure the safety of lives of our dear people of Irele. Let us continue to exercise calm and caution and eschew fear mongering as there is manifest evidence that the situation is being contained.
In case of any suspected case, please contact: WHO 08033720966, LGA DSNO – 08112524793 and the Ondo State Epidemiologist – 08062078384