Dr Isaac Adewole, Nigeria's Health Minister

Dr Isaac Adewole, Nigeria’s Health Minister

The dreaded Lassa fever which has been ravaging some parts of the country has landed in Abuja as Professor Isaac Adewole, Nigeria’s Minister of Health, confirmed that the viral fever has already claimed a life in the capital city on Wednesday.

The victim, according to the minister, died at National Hospital, Abuja where he also made the grim announcement on Wednesday evening.

Consequently, the Minister directed that all primary and secondary contacts of the victim should be tracked, including the staff of the private hospital in Kubwa where the deceased was first managed for one week and subsequently became unconscious before referral to National Hospital.

To curtail the spread of the hemorrhagic fever in the capital city, the minister advised family members to report at the nearest hospital if anyone has fever for more than two days while he also tasked health workers at all levels to be more vigilant and look out for patients with symptoms of Lassa fever.

He however advised residents of Abuja not to panic but to maintain high level vigilance and present themselves for test if they feel unhealthy or they feel symptoms of Lassa fever which includes high fever, stooling, tiredness, vomiting among others. The Minister added that self-medication should be avoided.

The Medical Director of the hospital, Dr Jack Momoh, who briefed the minister this evening during his visit to National Hospital, said that the patient was brought in unconscious from a private hospital in Kubwa, where he was admitted for eight days.

Dr. Momoh added that the 33-year-old newly married man was a resident of Jos, Plateau State.

According to him, the deceased patient came to see a family member in Kubwa because of his illness, but died within 24 hours of presentation at the National Hospital.

The latest death from Lassa fever brings the total number of deaths to 43 in the country.