The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has urged Nigerians to maintain clean environment, free of rodents to prevent and control Lassa fever.
The Chief Executive Officer, NCDC, Dr Chike Ihekweazu gave the advice in an interview with the News agency of Nigeria on Saturday in Abuja.
Ihekweazu also advised healthcare workers to report all frontline suspected cases of Lassa fever to local government Disease Surveillance Officers (DSOs).
He said that seven states had reported at least one case of Lassa fever with 19 confirmed cases and six people dead since December 2016.
He, however, noted that many laboratories in Nigeria did not have the capacity to diagnose Lassa fever.
According to the NCDC boss, by the second quarter of 2017, the national reference laboratory will be ready, where rapid diagnostic test will be carried without delay.
Contributing, the Media Coordinator, NCDC, Lawal Bakare, said the centre was collaborating with the Ministry of Agriculture to fashion out appropriate ways of food preservation to prevent the spread of Lassa fever.
He also urged people to practice hygiene to prevent the spread of debris which could attract rodents in the home.
The Connect Centre Respondent of NCDC, Ukenedo Chika, reiterated the need for Nigerians to make use of the NCDC connect centre toll free number, Twitter account and Facebook page.
According to Bakare, cleanliness is the best and only way of preventing rodents.
The Connect Centre Respondent, NCDC, Ukenedo Chika reiterated the need for Nigerians to make use of the NCDC connect centre toll free number, Twitter and Facebook page.
Chika assured that professionals were on standby to give out and collect information on Lassa fever. She urged people to report suspected cases of hemorrhagic fever or epidemic disease to NCDC.