News / Health

Nigeria Tracking 30,000 People at Risk of Contracting Ebola

Men read newspapers on a street with headlines about Ebola virus killing a Liberian in Lagos, Nigeria, July 26, 2014.
Men read newspapers on a street with headlines about Ebola virus killing a Liberian in Lagos, Nigeria, July 26, 2014.
VOA News

Nigerian health authorities are in the process of tracing more than 30,000 people who could be at risk of contracting Ebola, after the virus surfaced in Lagos.

The authorities have confirmed that a Liberian man who died in Lagos last Friday tested positive for Ebola, Reuters reported.

After the discovery, the hospital that dealt with Nigeria's first known Ebola victim was closed.

Professor Sunday Omilabu, from Lagos University Teaching Hospital, told Reuters the health authorities are now tracing everyone who may have had contact with the victim.

"We've been making contacts. We now have information about the manifest. We have information about who and who were around. So, as I'm talking, our teams are in the facility, where they've trained the staff, and then they [are] now asking questions about those that were closely in contact with the patient," said Professor Omilabu.

'We're actually looking at contacting over 30,000 people in this very scenario. Because any and everybody that has contacted this person is going to be treated as a suspect," said Yewande Adeshina, a public health adviser.

Nigeria's government has implemented a state of "red alert" at all border crossings and initiated a media campaign to alert the public.

Officials say that the nation's healthcare system is equipped to deal with any outbreak and that medical staff are properly trained.

Airline precautions

Elsewhere, Pan-African airline ASKY suspended all flights to and from the capitals of Liberia and Sierra Leone over the worsening Ebola health crisis, as the Liberian football association said it halted all activities in the country, the French news agency AFP reported on Tuesday.

The highly contagious and often fatal disease spreads among humans via bodily fluids, including sweat, meaning one can get sick from touching an infected person.

Also, Decontee Sawyer, the American widow of a Liberian government official who died after contracting Ebola, spoke with the Associated Press about her husband's death and her efforts to highlight the dangers of the virus.

Sawyer, speaking from her home in Coon Rapids, in the U.S. state of Minnesota, told the AP that her husband, Patrick Sawyer, had planned to come home for two of his three daughters' birthdays next month. 

She had learned that her husband caught the disease from his sister, who fell ill and died of Ebola. He did not know at the time that she had Ebola, Sawyer told the AP, as the virus shares symptoms with other diseases including malaria.

Some information for this report provided by Reuters, AFP and AP.

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Comments
     
by: eusebio manuel vestias from: Portugal
July 31, 2014 11:18 AM
Good Bless communities of Nigeria

by: steven from: Benin Rep
July 30, 2014 6:19 PM
Everybody have to be careful 4now and be the mood of prayer 4 God to help us 4 this endtime.
In Response

by: Robert from: California
July 31, 2014 3:56 AM
Praying for god is a good way to deal with the fear and hopelessness but believing that only god can help in this situation is part of the problem. No. Your god will not help you. Following established practices set forth through scientific understanding of how this virus reproduces is how to solve this problem. Putting this onto god is what the people who are dying in Africa are doing.

by: GoldmyneTV from: Lagos
July 30, 2014 3:55 PM
God help us

by: glory from: Edo state Nigeria
July 30, 2014 1:51 PM
God is the only answer to this problem.
In Response

by: omalicha from: usa
July 30, 2014 10:35 PM
Greeting to all I'm sorry to here about this bad and deadly virus I'm from USA but my husband is from Lagos I was planning my travel next month in August but all flights are canceled my question is how what are some of the symptoms is it from a bug bite or something and is it any kind of medications that u can take to prevent catching it please share if any one knows in the mean time please be careful just know that god is our strength he is a healer there is nothing our god can not do father god In ur holy name I ask that u keep everyone safe from all sickness please father god remove Ebola from Lagos Nigeria thank you and amen be blessed 😊

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