L.A.S MEDIA HOUSE

Sunday, 17 August 2014

THE NEWS : Nigerian Government Trains 800 Volunteers Across NigeriaTo Fight Ebola Epidemic

Medical workers at an Ebola outbreak
epicenter in Guinea (Photo Credit:
Flickr/European Co)
AFP – Nigeria has trained 800
volunteers to help fight the deadly Ebola
epidemic that has already claimed four
lives in Africa's most populous country,
a regional governor spokesman said
Saturday.
Authorities in the country's largest city of
Lagos last week appealed for
volunteers to make up for a shortage of
medical personnel because of a six-
week doctors' strike over pay.
"People have heeded our call for
service," said Hakeem Bello, a
spokesman for Lagos State Governor
Babatunde Fashola.
"We have trained some 800 volunteers
in the area of contact tracing,
sensitisation and treatment of the Ebola
disease."
Four people have died and six more
infected by Ebola in Nigeria as part of
the worst-ever outbreak of the deadly
virus, which has killed 1,145 people
across west Africa since the outbreak
began this year.
Volunteers have so far been deployed
to 57 districts of Nigeria, Bello said,
adding that more are needed to contain
the outbreak, particularly to treat those
infected with the disease.
Nigerian doctors have been on strike
nationwide since July 1 to demand a
payrise and better working conditions.
In response, Lagos' state government
has stepped up a media campaign to
raise awareness of how to prevent the
spread of the disease, including across
radio, television and public health
announcements.
Nigeria became the fourth west African
country to be hit by the Ebola epidemic
last month after Guinea, Liberia and
Sierra Leone.
Athletes from Nigeria have been forced
to withdraw from the Youth Olympics in
China as a result of the outbreak,
Chinese state media reported Saturday.
The International Olympic Committee
has barred athletes from Ebola-hit
countries from competing in pool events
and combat sports.
The disease is spread by contact with
an infected person's bodily fluids such
as sweat, blood and tissue and no cure
or vaccine is currently available.
The last days of an Ebola victim can be
grim, characterised by agonising
muscular pain, vomiting, diarrhoea and
catastrophic haemorrhaging described
as "bleeding out" as vital organs break
down.
Nigeria's first fatality was Liberian
government employee Patrick Sawyer,
who brought the virus to Lagos, sub-
Saharan Africa's largest city, on July
20. He died in hospital on July 25.
Nigeria has not recorded a case outside
Lagos but there were fears that a nurse
who contracted Ebola from Sawyer at
the hospital may have carried the virus
to the key southeastern city of Enugu.
Sent from my BlackBerry wireless device from MTN

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