Lassa fever: Ondo State launches operation “kill all rats”

The Ondo State Government says it has increased the level of health awareness campaign to prevent outbreak of Lassa fever in the state, tagged operation “kill all rats, stay in hygienic environment”. Dr Olumide Akadiri, the Chief Medical Director, Ondo State Specialist Hospital, Okitipupa, said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Wednesday in Okitipupa.

Akadiri said the increased awareness and enlightenment campaign, followed the recent re-occurrence of the outbreak of Lassa fever in some parts of the country, hence, the launch of operation “kill all rats, stay in hygienic environment”.

He said that the hospital medical team had molibilised other health officers at the Okitipupa council, to raise the level of awareness of the people in the locality to the recurrence of Lassa fever. Kadiri, who maintained that no case of Lassa fever had been reported in the state, explained that the awareness campaign was a proactive measure to prevent the disease through education of the people on the need to maintain a healthy environment and life style.

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NAN reports that Lassa fever is caused by Lassa virus found in infected rats with many breasts (multimate rat) named Mastonys Matalensis. He said: “We heard about the re-occurrence of Lassa fever in some states but we have not recorded any case here.

“We launched an awareness team that goes to all communities in this council to declare total war on rats and ensure they live in hygienic environment at all times. “I also implore residents to always cover their foodstuffs very well and ensure they throw away leftovers which usually are baits to contact the disease.”

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