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PostPosted: Thu Aug 14, 2014 11:16 am 
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Infected Nigerian nurse skips Ebola quarantine
2014-08-14 07:27

Abuja - A nurse who contracted Ebola at a Lagos hospital travelled to the eastern part of Nigeria before falling sick, raising fears of new infections outside the city, officials said on Wednesday.

The nurse was infected with the deadly tropical disease while caring for Patrick Sawyer, the Liberian government employee who brought Ebola to Lagos on 20 July.

He died on 25 July under quarantine at the First Consultants hospital in Lagos.

Information Minister Labaran Maku earlier told journalists that the nurse "disobeyed medical instructions" given to hospital staff by travelling to Enugu, a major city in the east.

21 being watched

Health Minister Onyebuchi Chukwu later confirmed that the nurse had tested positive for Ebola.

After contracting the virus in Lagos, she travelled with her husband to Enugu, where she fell sick and went to a hospital.

Medical staff in Enugu transported her back to a special isolation unit in Lagos, where she is currently being treated, the minister said.

So far, there is no confirmation that she infected anyone in the eastern city, but "21 persons (in Enugu) are being watched," Maku said.

Nigeria has recorded 10 Ebola cases, including three deaths. All the cases are currently in Lagos but a spread of the virus across the country, Africa's most populous, would place immense strain on a weak healthcare system.

The nurse's husband has also been quarantined in Lagos despite not having any symptoms, Chukwu told journalists.

"We have to be sure," the health minister said.

Nigeria has tried to locate everyone who interacted with Sawyer, including those on his flight, which originated in Liberia's capital Monrovia.

Maku said 198 people have been identified who may have come into contact with the disease, including those in Enugu.

The worst-ever outbreak of the tropical disease has killed more than 1,000 people since the start of the year in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone. Nigeria is the fourth country to be affected by the epidemic.

All of the affected countries have declared national emergencies over Ebola.

Restrictions on burials

Nigeria's health minister said the government had cracked down on the movement of corpses for burial.

Aside from health workers, those who participate in the burial of Ebola victims are among the most at-risk for infection.

Families who want to repatriate the remains of a relative must secure a special waiver, which will only be given after the cause of death has been established, Chukwu said.

Similarly, transporting a corpse across state lines is prohibited without approval from federal health authorities, he said.

- AFP

http://www.news24.com/Africa/News/Infec ... e-20140814

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 14, 2014 11:21 am 
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A doctor who attended to late Patrick Sawyer at the First Consultant Hospital has been confirmed positive with the Ebola virus. Speaking at a news conference today, the Nigerian Minister of Health, Professor Onyebuchi Chukwu said the doctor is currently undergoing treatment at the quarantine centre in Lagos.
Prof Onyebuchi revealed that some of the 169 secondary contacts of Sawyer were no longer under surveillance and had been released, having completed the 21 days of incubation period.
The Minister also said the nurse who had escaped the quarantine center in Lagos and traveled to Enugu state has been returned back to Lagos with her husband in a special traveling ambulance.


'In Enugu yesterday, there were 21 secondary contacts with the nurse. But after investigations, there are only 6 secondary contacts now. The nurse who is newly wedded had no symptoms of the disease when she traveled to Enugu. She was transported back to Lagos in a special ambulance with her husband. Her husband is under quarantine now” the minister said

http://lindaikeji.blogspot.com/2014/08/ ... la-as.html

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 14, 2014 11:13 pm 
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Ebola latest: Another nurse dies, doctor in bad state

on August 15, 2014 / in Headlines 12:00 am / Comments


By Sola Ogundipe, Chioma Obinna, Tony Edike, Okey Ndiribe, Favour Nnabugwu, Monsuru Olowoopejo, Gabriel Olawale & Racheal Adebayo

ABUJA — A nurse, Justina Obi Echelonu, one of the primary contacts who participated in the initial management of the index case, late American-Liberian, Patrick Sawyer, at the First Consultant Hospital, Obalende, Lagos, has died in quarantine.

She is the second nurse and fourth fatality of the Ebola Virus Disease in the country.

Minister of Health, Professor Onyebuchi Chukwu confirmed her death yesterday at a joint press briefing with the Minister of Information, Labaran Maku, in Abuja.

The Lagos State Ebola quarantine centre and Late Nurse Obi Justina Ejelonu
The Lagos State Ebola quarantine centre and Late Nurse Justina Obi Ejelonu
Chukwu, who disclosed that another of the doctors who treated the late Patrick Sawyer tested positive to the deadly virus, said Nigeria has now recorded 10 confirmed cases of Ebola Virus Disease, EVD, of which four have died and six are currently under treatment.

“The total number of persons under surveillance in Lagos is now 169. These are all secondary contacts as all the primary contacts have completed the 21-day incubation period and have been de-listed to resume their normal lives,” the Minister explained.

Earlier, a top medical expert who is part of the medical team of experts managing confirmed cases at the Ebola Ward of the Mainland Hospital, Yaba, Lagos, said the nurse passed away in the early hours of yesterday.

“We lost her in the early hours of today after much effort. She was one of the people that helped Sawyer when he was vomiting and stooling. That was when she contacted it,” he remarked.

Lagos State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Jide Idris, who spoke to our correspondent on phone, said he could not confirm the death of the nurse yet but promised to give details after the Ebola Management Committee meeting scheduled to hold at the hospital later in the evening.

Also confirming news of her death, Abia State Governor, Theodore Orji regretted the demise of the nurse, and commended her for her selfless service to the nation. In a statement issued, yesterday, the governor prayed for the repose of the dead.

“My heart bleeds as I write this. On behalf of my family, the Government and the good people of Abia State, I commiserate with family, friends and colleagues of our dear lady nurse, Justina Echelonu, who died following the contact she had with the American-Liberian, Mr. Patrick Sawyer, in the course of discharging her duty as a nurse. I pray God to give them the fortitude to bear this tragic and irreparable loss. Rest in Peace Ms Justina Echelonu.”

Ms. Echelonu is the fourth person to die of the disease in Nigeria after Mr. Sawyer died on July 25 and was followed by two other nurses.

Justina, 25, previously worked at Otunba Tunwase National Paediatric Centre, Ijebu-Ode in Ogun State before relocating to Lagos to take up appointment with First Consultants Hospital. She hailed from Mbaise in Imo State and graduated from the Department of Nursing Science in Ebonyi State University, Abakaliki.

Justina’s story before she died

“I never contacted his fluids. I checked his vitals, helped him with his food (he was too weak)….I basically touched where his hands touched and that’s the only contact, not directly with his fluids. At a stage, he yanked off his infusion and we had blood everywhere on his bed…but the ward maids took care of that and changed his linen with great precaution.

“Every patient is treated as high risk…if it were airborne, by now wahala for dey. I still thank God.

Friends, up to our uniforms and all linen were burnt off. We are on surveillance and off work till 11th.

“Our samples have long been taken by WHO and so far we have been fine. For me, kudos to my hospital management because we work professionally with every patient considered risk, because that’s the training.

“Had it been it’s a hospital where they manage ordinary gloves like government hospitals and some janjaweed private hospital, …wahala for dey o. I must also thank Lagos Govt…in fact! Even Federal Government sef (sic)…all have been supportive. I’m good and so are the others in the hospital…”

(culled from her Facebook page).

Enugu, Abia, Anambra, Abuja cleared

Further, the Health Minister stated that Enugu State now has six persons under surveillance as 15 after complete evaluation were found not to have had contact with the nurse, a primary contact of the index case who became symptomatic and tested positive and is one of the 10 confirmed cases.

“The nurse who had been placed under surveillance in Lagos disobeyed the Incidence Management Committee and travelled to Enugu. At the time she made the trip, she was yet to show any symptom and did not infect anyone on her way as transmission of the disease is only possible when a carrier of the virus becomes ill.

“However, she has since been brought back to Lagos. Before the return journey, she had become symptomatic and had to be conveyed to Lagos with her spouse in special ambulances. The husband is not symptomatic neither is he positive for Ebola Virus Disease but has been quarantined given the intimate contact with her while in Enugu.

“It is therefore important to emphasise that there is no Ebola Virus Disease in Enugu. All cases are still confined to Lagos State. Also, reports of Ebola Virus Disease in Abia, Imo, Akwa Ibom and Anambra States as well as the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja have all been investigated and none of them was found to be Ebola Virus positive,” Chukwu affirmed.

The minister reaffirmed that the last Federal Executive Council, FEC resolved to partner with the World Health Organisation, UNICEF, governors in their respective states and their commissioners for health for adequate co-operation. “We have been in contact with the private sector and Nigerian scientists both home and abroad”.

He announced that an emergency operation centre under the coordination of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), in collaboration with an inter-ministerial committee headed by the Minister of Information, Labaran Maku, has been set up by President Goodluck Jonathan.

Chukwu affirmed that all the 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory, FCT are well prepared to contain the virus even in the states that the EVD has not been reported aside Lagos, adding that all hands are on deck to prevent its spread within and outside Lagos.

He said President Goodluck Jonathan held an emergency meeting with all states of the Federation and the FCT to review the state of preparedness of each of the states during which each of the states gave a status report on their readiness while the Lagos State Government gave an account of the Ebola experience in the state.

Chukwu said the Federal Government and international health agencies commended the efforts of the Lagos State Government, describing it as adequate and satisfactory from preventing the spread of the virus.

He said most of the states are very well prepared ahead, and added that the World Health Organisation, commended President Jonathan for the leadership provided, especially his personal commitment to ensure that the EVD does not spread further.

He appealed to Nigerians to adhere strictly to health regulations of washing their hands with sanitizers in line with the WHO international health regulations and in keeping with international best practices in order to keep safe and healthy.

Chukwu further stated that health specialists have been positioned in all of the nation’s entry points, and active surveillance has also been stepped up. All government tertiary health institutions have also been equipped to handle any emergency that might arise from the disease.

“In Imo State, the case was that of a corpse returned from Liberia to Abia accompanied by proper medical certificate of death, and added that the deceased was confirmed to have been cleared of Ebola.

“In Anambra, a corpse was also returned from Liberia with medical certificate of death while all the people that accompanied the corpse had no Ebola

“In the case of Garki Hospital, Abuja, a diabetic and HIV patient was taken to the hospital in coma after which the doctors exhausted all necessary tests for Ebola.”

Chukwu said it was deduced that a patient that had two critical diseases, he could as well have had Ebola but the test carried out was negative hence there is no case of Ebola.

The Imo case, he said, was a case of Stephen Johnson’s syndrome, meaning that the patient reacted to a malaria drug which caused her skin to start peeling off and not a case of Ebola.

Fleeing Nurse attended wedding

Enugu state government said yesterday that nobody is quarantined in the state over the deadly Ebola virus. The State Commissioner of Health, Dr George Eze who made this known while speaking with journalists confirmed that about 20 persons were under surveillance following contact they made with the nurse who attended to the late Patrick Sawyer.

Eze stated that the state government has designated four centres including the Colliery Hospital, the District Hospital in Ikem, General Hospital in Nsukka and Oji River General hospital as isolation centres for victims of the disease.

The government’s clarification came as the state branch of the Nigeria Medical Association (NMA), expressed displeasure over the poor preparedness and the way in which the state government has responded to the Ebola virus issue.

The association stated that till date, medical workers in the state were still confused on where to send patients with the ailment, stressing that government has paid less attention to procuring protective devices for volunteers and health workers that could enable them attend to the cases.

Eze stated that the nurse that had contact with Sawyer defied medical advice to visit the husband in Enugu, explaining that the government had acted swiftly on receiving the information and ensured that she and the husband were taken back to Lagos.

He stated that the 20 persons placed under surveillance were due to the contact they had with the lady, explaining that they would only be isolated when they begin to manifest symptoms of the virus.

He said: “You do not quarantine somebody who is moving about because it is only when you develop symptoms that you will be able to transmit the virus and that is when you have excess viral load. It was when she came down to Enugu from what we got from her and the husband that she now started having symptoms. It was then that we were informed, we moved in swiftly and provide the wherewithal with support from expatriates that came down from Lagos, we were able to isolate her and decontaminate the house in line with WHO standard and took her back to Lagos.

“Naturally you have to try to track down the contacts anywhere. It is those contacts that have been put under surveillance. They are in their homes and they are placed under surveillance by Centre for Disease Control in Lagos”.

He stated that the panic being expressed over the development was unnecessary, stressing that the disease can only be transmitted by those who have manifested the symptoms which will unlikely be walking about the streets.

On the provision of protective gear and other materials for personnel, he said the state like others have requested for the facilities from the federal government and would ensure that the materials were not fake.

On the information that the lady in question had attended a wedding in Enugu, he said: “If somebody is well enough to attend and enjoy himself in a wedding, it is not going to transmit the virus. It is only when the person has become ill and developed symptoms”.

On why it has taken so long for the Ministry to brief the people of the state on the situation of things regarding the disease, he said that he wanted to ensure that the public were given the right information.

He said the centres earmarked have been provided with facilities such as bed among others, adding that Centre for Disease Control would soon start training volunteers.

Waivers for corpses from Ghana, India

The Health Minister said waivers were granted to corpses brought in from Ghana and India because they were not Ebola cases. He explained that the one from India died from cancer of the rectum adding that both were proper certified.

Concerns over quarantined victims

Meanwhile, fears heightened yesterday over the health of 198 Nigerians in quarantine, following reports that they are critically ill.
Although plans are underway by the Federal Government to provide Personal Protective Equipment, isolation tents and relevant facilities to halt the spread in the country, concerned Nigerians have called for technical support and expertise from the United States of America and the international community to help contain the spread of the disease in Nigeria
Speaking in Lagos, Managing Director, Premium Health, HMO, Dr. Ladi Okuboyejo, disclosed that. while a few victims have passed on as a result of infection with the virus, there is need for international intervention to halt the likely spread of the disease as the situation is beyond what the country can deal with presently.
Okuboyejo commended the chief consultant and other health workers at the First Consultants Hospital, Obalende, for promptly reporting the case to the appropriate health authorities after the late Patrick Sawyer, failed to respond to treatment. However, he pointed out that a lot more needed to be done to address the situation so that it does not get out of control in the country.
”We have been following closely and know some of the individuals that are being quarantined and it is beyond what we can deal with right now.
“This disease is new to us in the country and we have never been involved in containing this kind of outbreak. There is need for the international community to come and assist Nigeria in helping to halt the likely spread of the disease. As we speak, those quarantined are critically ill.
”I know that the Federal Government is trying its best but there is a lot more we can do to address this situation. Nigeria is too big to be ignored. This disease is new to us in Nigeria and there are experts
globally that have experience in treating Ebola globally. We need to tap into their expertise in-country. It is a learning curve for everyone. It is beyond our capacity to handle. If this gets out of control, the consequences, you know,” Okuboyejo disclosed.

Relatives of infected doctor send SOS to US, others
Okuboyejo, who led a group of relatives and concerned friends of the quarantined Senior Consultant Physician and Endocrinologist, Dr. Ameyo Stella Adadevoh, of the First Consultants Medical Centre, at a media briefing in Lagos yesterday, sent an SOS to the United States and international community.

“When you turn on your television now the first news item you hear about is Ebola. A few victims have passed on and the question is what is the state of things in our nation right now. We have been following it very closely because a couple of us happen to know a number of people who have been quarantined and it is obvious to all of us that are concerned that are sitting down here that it is beyond what we can deal with. We would not want to paint what is black white but it is beyond what we can deal with right now and therefore we feel that there is a need for us to make this urgent cry for help for the international community to come to our aid and our assistance.
“I think that it is important that we reflect back and try and see how things happened. I am a medical doctor and I am surprised that they made the diagnosis in the first instance because this is a man that could have gone somewhere else and could have been treated for malaria and he could have died and spread the thing like wild fire. However, the chief consultant that attended to these patients who is also being quarantined right now felt it was very necessary for them to send the blood sample for screening after which it was confirmed and she insisted he must not leave the Hospital.
“So I think we must get the facts right and really come out. We are particularly concerned that if someone could be so patriotic as to save millions of Nigerians from the hardship of this pestilence, the least we can do is to make an appeal to the international community for assistance.
“Two Americans were flown to Atlanta for help. The chap who brought this thing to Nigeria was an American. Our question is that what is the international community doing for us? What are they doing to help the situation because as we speak this is beyond what we can cope with. For example the patients that are there under quarantine, do they even have water? Do we have the facilities to cope with this? It is a big question mark.

“We know that the government is trying but certainly there is a lot more we can do to improve the situation. This why we are making this passionate cry and appeal to the international community to come to our aid so that this doesn’t get out of control. Nigeria is the most populous country in Africa and God forbid if this runs out of control. The consequences you all know. So we have to call you to make this passionate appeal to you.”

Nigerian in Diaspora send experimental drug home

Chukwu also confirmed that a Nigerian in the Diaspora has an experimental drug for Ebola treatment. He said the drug, “Nanosilver”, would be distributed to all Ebola health centres n the country.

“The experimental drug is a donation from a Nigerian scientist in the Diaspora who was concerned about threat of Ebola in his home country. The drug will be distributed to all Ebola centres in the country”.



Dangote donates N150 million

Meanwhile, the Aliko Dangote Foundation donated N150million to fund the establishment of Ebola Emergency Centre in Lagos. In her remarks, the Managing Director of the Foundation Mrs. Igomu Agaga called on well-meaning Nigerians to collaborate with the Ministry of Health and also take personal interest in the fight against Ebola in the country.

“We are trying to look at the possible best way we can be of help in the Ebola virus crises and we decided to fund an emergency centre that will be established in Lagos in order to strengthen the Nigerian health system”.

FG warns media against running down Nigeria

Minister of Information, Labaran Maku, stated: “So far, as the ministry reported this morning, all those who had primary contacts with the subject had been quarantined which is the way the global community handles the disease and the secondary contacts have also been traced.

“There is a strong team in Lagos which has been set up by the emergency response centre that is tracing every contact that has been made with either the index case or with primary contacts. So far the number of people that have been traced is 169 are under surveillance in Lagos”.



Maku said the country had moved in a way that it had not done before, “and globally the standards we have kept, the efforts we have made, the policies we have deployed, the measures we have taken surely should give our citizens and the world at large the confidence that Nigeria is doing everything possible to contain this virus.

“In addition to this, the Ministry of Health has also been in close touch with all the state governments, and the governors are receiving continuous briefings on the measures we have taken and what we should do at the state level.”

Maku who commended the efforts of the media since the outbreak of the Ebola Virus Disease, EVD, said the media had been very supportive and cooperative except for one or two local media and two international agencies that had been reporting the Nigeria case as if Ebola originated from the country while he said the foreign media reported the country’s Ebola case as if global total figure of the Ebola was Nigeria’s.

“We will take action against any media that wants to run down the country for any reason. We will not allow any international media to use the Ebola to damage the corporate image of this country.”

Mandatory screening for air travellers

All passengers on international flights through the nation’s airports must be subjected to tests for the Ebola virus, it has been confirmed.

Minister of Aviation, Mr Osita Chidoka disclosed this while speaking during a courtesy visit paid him by Deputy Chief Information Officer at the United States Embassy, Ms Maria Brewer.

Further, he stated that the ministry was working on developing protocols at the airports in order to deal with diseases that are highly infectious, adding that in order to achieve the desired goal all rules are being complied with.

Commenting on the nation’s aviation status he said: “On the Category One certification status, I think we are on track and I think that all the gaps are being addressed so that by the time they come back, all the facilities would have been in place.”

He observed that the Ebola virus was not a dampener to the nation “because it will make us increase our protocols at the airport. I believe we are on track. Nigeria’s reaction to the Ebola crisis has been quite good.”

“We intend to collaborate with the embassy in several areas. This is a real challenge for us in West Africa; this unfortunate episode of the man that imported the disease into Nigeria. Our reaction has been quite swift and these measures are very far reaching and so far all the people with known primary contacts have been quarantined. We are thinking that the transport sector is going to be the purveyor of the movement from point A to point B.

“The airports being controlled environments, it would be easy for us to curtail the movement of people coming in and exiting. We have been trying to watch even people on local flights like from Abuja to Lagos. So I think our curtailment strategy has been good and proactive. I also believe that things that we need to do like the on-going screening at the airports and increment in the number of health workers being recruited are all geared towards curtailing the spread of the disease”

In her own remarks at the occasion, Ms Brewer commended the Federal Government for the steps it has taken so far to check the spread of the dreaded disease. She also confirmed that the US Embassy had been working with the ministry in Abuja and Lagos to ensure that screening of passengers is on-going at the airports.

Further, Chidoka said: “The Centre for Disease Control (CDC) in the United States has also been working very closely with Nigerian authorities at all levels to ensure that this disease is stamped out and that it doesn’t further impact on any population whether it is here in Nigeria or anywhere else. This is a top priority for the US government.”

Brewer further stated that the embassy was in synergy through “our public health communicators by making sure that the right information is given to the public on what they need to know, what to do, what the disease looks like and how to move forward as well as on individuals who can help in screening. We have also offered help to assist in screening passengers that are coming into the country and those going out.”

- See more at: http://www.vanguardngr.com/2014/08/ebol ... eGr3j.dpuf

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2014 2:00 pm 
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New Ebola Case In Lagos As Runaway Nurse Brought Back From Enugu Is Discharged
The sudden discovery of her case caused a stir within the center as to the veracity of tested cases, and the safety of those cleared to leave the quarantine center by doctors at the center.

BY SAHARA REPORTERSAUG 18, 2014

A nurse has tested positive for Ebola infection in Lagos today, increasing the number of Ebola cases to 13 according to anonymous government sources.
Image
Nurse treating Ebola patients in Monrovia, Liberia

Al-Jazeera America
The infected, whose name was given simply as “Nkechi”, had been under quarantine in Lagos. Doctors monitoring her said she initially tested negative and had been cleared to leave the center, but suddenly developed high temperatures that led to new tests which showed that she in fact had the virus.

The sudden discovery of her case caused a stir within the center as to the veracity of tested cases, and the safety of those cleared to leave the quarantine center by doctors at the center.

The nurse was admitted today for care.

In a related story, a nurse who last week skipped quarantine to escape to Enugu and was brought back to Lagos has tested negative for EVD and was subsequently discharged from the Ebola center.

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