Togo: Togo's health ministry cautions public to avoid Lassa fever virus

Lome, Togo (PANA) - Togo's Minister of Health and Social Welfare, Prof. Moustafa Mijiyawa, has urged the public not to panic but heed the measures outlined by his ministry to avoid the haemorrhagic Lassa fever virus, after two cases of the disease were reported last week in Oti prefecture, located in the Savanes Region of Togo.

In a statement issued here Tuesday, the health ministry said Lassa fever is an acute illness,  the virus of which is transmitted to humans by rats whose urine or faeces contaminate food or household items.

The virus can also be transmitted from human to human through direct contact with blood, urine, faeces, vomit or other body fluids of a sick person.

"The disease is curable," said the ministry, stating that  its symptoms include fever, headache, sore throat, cough, nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, muscle aches, chest pain, bleeding; and having a history of contact with excreta of rodents or with a confirmed case of Lassa fever.

The ministry further advised people to wash hands often with soap and water, avoid touching or carrying the body of dead people of Lassa fever or unknown causes; keep rodents off their homes; keep grains and more generally food in rodent-proof containers; and maintain cleanliness inside homes.

Further, the ministry has encouraged people to dispose of waste away from homes, avoid the consumption and handling of rodents, avoid contact with blood and other body fluids of a patient, and inform the nearest health centre of anyone with signs of the disease.
-0- PANA AR/VAO 15March2016

15 mars 2016 13:47:41

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