After the first case of the pox emerged in Bayelsa late last month,a disease suspected to be monkey pox has been reported in six more states, the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control said yesterday.
The discoveries bring the total number of likely monkey pox cases to 31, across seven states-Bayelsa, Rivers, Ekiti, Akwa Ibom, Lagos, Ogun and Cross River.
“So far, there have been no deaths recorded,” said NCDC chief executive Chikwe Ihekweazu. “It is unlikely that many of the suspected cases are actually monkey pox, but all are being investigated.”
The centre said samples had been collected for laboratory confirmation and results are yet to return.
All 31 cases are hospitalized in respective states and said to be “improving clinically. While there is no treatment for monkey pox, supportive care and management helps patients recover, since the virus is self limiting.”
An emergency operations centre has been activated to coordinate investigation and response to the outbreak across all seven states. But a notification for “preparedness” has been issued for the entire country.
Lagos State government said two suspected cases of Monkey Pox in private hospitals have been reported in the state.
At an emergency briefing by the state Commissioner for Health, Dr Jide Idris yesterday, the state government said “Though no confirmed case has been recorded, there is the need to sensitise members of the public on measures for prevention and control of the disease in line with the policy of the state government,” Idris said.
He said one of the two suspected people being investigated had confirmed visiting and returning from Bayelsa State where there had been reported cases of the monkey pox outbreak.