Gov. Dave Umahi of Ebonyi has ordered the immediate closure of St. Vincent Hospital at Igbagu in Izzi Local Government Area of Ebonyi following a suspected outbreak of Lassa fever at the hospital.
The order is contained in a statement issued on Friday in Abakaliki by Mr Francis Nwaze, the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Media.
Umahi also said that all the staff and patients of the hospital should submit themselves to the Virology Centre at Abakaliki for comprehensive medical examinations.
The governor also said that all the family members and close relatives of the patients and staff of St. Vincent Hospital be quarantined at the South-East Virology Centre, for close medical observation.
Umahi assured the residents that the state government through its Ministry of Health would contain the spread of the disease and urged the public not to panic.
The statement read in part: “Gov. Dave Umahi has directed that the Ministry of Health under the watch of Dr Daniel Umezurike, Commissioner for Health, in conjunction with the staff of Alex Ekwueme Federal Teaching Hospital, to immediately address all issues relating to the Lassa fever outbreak.
“The engagement should include a comprehensive examination of all suspects and the clean-up of St. Vincent Hospital.
“It should also include the placement of precautionary announcements in all media houses in the state on the preventive measures of Lassa fever.’’
The statement said that the governor also directed that progress reports on the above directives should be reaching him every two hours.