By Abooluwa Famakinwa
Following the outbreak of Cerebrospinal Meningitis and over 600 deaths across twenty two States of the federation, Ondo State Ministry of Health began aggressive sensitisation of Health Workers today.
The sensitisation which came as a resolve of the State’s Emergency Response Team which swung into action immediately the outbreak of the epidemic was reported in the country few weeks ago.
Dr. Taye Oni , the health Permanent Secretary opined that the sensitisation of Health Workers on how to handle this infectious disease is one of the proactive measures taken by the state to protect its Health Workers as they are at risk.
Furthermore ,the Permanent Secretary said the sensitisation which started with the State Specialist Hospital Akure will be replicated in other hospitals, Departments ,Units and the Ministry of health.
He charged workers to be alive to their duties and replicate the information received even to their patients and neighbours .
In his words,the Government will do all that is humanly. possible to prevent the outbreak of Meningitis and nip it in the bud if gets to the State as no one can prevent human traffic into the state from affected States.
Dr. Ola Obaado the Director Public Health who gave a comprehensive overview of Cerebrospinal Meningitis ,its symptoms, prevention and treatment said the sensitisation is coming on the nick of time to protect health worker from the risk of infection, provoke a high level if suspicion and promptness in its nipping in the bud if there is outbreak.
Obaado revealed that Nigeria lies in the Meningitis belt with a prevalence of the Neisseria Meningitides type C of the epidemic which could either be caused by Virus or Bacteria infection.
He expressed sadness that the rate is increasing and the death toll is rising by the day while admonishing that all hands must be on deck to prevent its outbreak in the state.
Obaado appealed to residents to avoid overcrowding, filthy environment, sharing of drinking utensils, spiting any how and any where, handshake, hugging, kissing among others.
Head, Ondo State Public Health Lab, Mrs. Modupe Ogunbiyi also took a lecture on Best Laboratory practices and how Cerebrospinal Meningitis Sample should be taken, processed for accurate result as the success of the fight against the epidemic depend heavily on the effectiveness of the Laboratory.
Responding, most participants expressed readiness to be up and doing but pleaded with the Government to adequately furnish them with the wherewithal to perform the onerous task before them.