By Chioma Umeha
The Lagos State Government has alerted residents on the dangers of Cerebro Spinal Meningitis and urged them to observe high standards of personal and environmental hygiene as preventive measures against Cerebrospinal Meningitis (CSM).
Idris in a statement on Monday signed by the Director, Public Affairs, Lagos State Ministry of Health, Mrs Adeola Salako, warned that the decease is deadly.
The commissioner said that no case of CSM had been recorded in the state contrary to what had been published
“However as a responsive government, we deem it fit to alert the public, “ he said.
Idris said preventive measures should include washing of hands with soap and water frequently.
“It is strongly advised for people to avoid overcrowding in living quarters, provide cross-ventilation in sleeping and work-rooms and other places where many people come together.
“People should also get vaccinated with CSM vaccine when you are travelling to areas where meningitis outbreaks have been reported, “ he said.
The commissioner said CSM is a dangerous and a life threatening disease that affects the thin layers of the tissue around the brain and spinal cord of an infected human person and is caused by bacteria.
He said that CSM is an epidemic-prone disease that spreads from person to person through contact with discharges or droplets from nose and throat of an infected person.
“It can also be transmitted through kissing, sneezing and coughing, especially amongst people living in close quarters, hotels, refugee camp, barracks, public transportation and areas with poor ventilation or overcrowded places, “ Idris said.
He said that though seasonal meningitis outbreak usually affects mainly the Northern States that fall within the meningitis belt of the country, it is not impossible that outbreaks could occur in any part of the country.
While urging residents to take responsibility for their health and report persons with the above symptoms to the nearest public health facility or the Ministry of Health, the Commissioner stated that the State Government had put in place all the above measures towards avoidance and prevention of outbreak of CSM in Lagos State.
Idris advised the general public to remain calm and report suspected cases to the nearest public health facility or contact Disease Surveillance Officers of the Ministry of Heath on the following GSM numbers: 08037170614, 09087106072, 08023169485, 08052817243, 08026441681.
The commissioner said that health workers in the state in all the 57 Local Governments and Local Council Development Areas had been placed on high alert.
According to him, the disease surveillance and monitoring activities have since been intensified.
“Health workers are also advised to avoid close contact with suspected and probable cases of CSM based on the case definition distributed and ensure proper disposal of respiratory and throats secretions of cases.
“They are also to report suspected or probable cases, observe universal safety precautionary measures and make use of personal protective equipment when in contact with such cases as highlighted in the Fact-Sheets earlier forwarded to them, “ he said.
He urged residents to take responsibility for their health and report persons with the above symptoms to the nearest public health facility or the Ministry of Health.