AS the Anambra State Government and Health officials work round the clock to ensure the sensitization of the citizenry on the dangers of the Lassa fever, the medical director of Madonna Hospital, Awka, and Deputy Comptroller of prisons in the state, Dr. Frank Uzor has called on the citizenry to adopt hand washing habits as cardinal precautionary measure to prevent the spread of the virus.
Dr. Uzor who gave the advice during an awareness health lecture of the Parents/Teachers Association Meeting, St. Patrick College, Awka, also called for general personal hygiene as well as cultivating good environmental cleanliness.
The medical expert called for the eradication of rats which remain the primary source of contamination to man.
According to him, efforts should be made to report all cases of persistent fever to health authorities for examination.
Dr. Uzor adviced the citizenry to ensure that their diet is rich and immune enhancing to build the body’s resistance to disease.
In a related development, a former Awka Zonal Chairman of the Nigeria Medical Association, Dr. Oliver Onwughalu called on the citizenry to adopt good personal hygiene and sound environmental hygiene to curtail the movement of rats which are the major carriers of the disease.
Dr. Onwughalu, the medical director of Zion Maternity Hospital in Nawfia noted that no case of the disease has been reported in his hospital and advised people to always keep their surroundings and homes clean to discourage the breeding of rats.
According to him, all cooked or uncooked food should be covered properly to prevent rats from passing their stool, urine or saliva on them.
Dr. Onwughalu noted that the virus which presents with the symptoms of fever, diarrhea, bleeding from the ears, mouth, and other openings in the body can be controlled better if detected early and treatment administered than when it is too late.
He disclosed that the disease often thrives during the dry season, and advised the citizenry to always avoid being dehydrated by constantly taking of water whether they are tasty or not.