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Lassa fever: Edo Govt solicits FG assistance

By Asma’u Ahmad

The Edo State Government has solicited for assistance from the Federal Government to tackle the increasing number of Lassa fever patients being admitted at the Irrua Specialist Teaching Hospital (ISTH) in the state.

The state Deputy Governor, Mr Philip Shaibu, made the appeal at Irrua after visiting the hospital. He said the visit was to access the utilisation of equipment purchased by the state government to assist the hospital management in treating the patients. Mr Shaibu said that the federal government assistance become imperative as the number of suspected Lassa fever patients being brought to the hospital from other states was increasing.

He also appealed to other states to upgrade their hospitals and acquired the requisite equipment not only to save lives but to discourage medical tourism. It would be recalled that Governor Godwin Obaseki had earlier given the hospital management a two-day ultimatum to install and utilise equipment donated to the hospital by the state government.

Briefing the deputy governor earlier, the Chief Medical Director of the hospital, Dr Sylvanus Okogbeni, said all facilities in the Lassa fever Renal Centre Unit had been over stretched. Dr Okogbeni explained they were over stretched because of the increase in patients being brought to the hospital following the recent outbreak in parts of the country.

He listed facilities as wards, water and equipment for treatment as well as personnel. Okogbeni, however, praised the state government for providing two dialysis machine, one ventilator, a mobile X-ray and repair of the hospitals borehole, which he said were already been put to use.

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