Nigerians have been warned to avoid crowded places in order to stay away from the contagious monkey pox virus.
Prof. Isaac Adewole, the Minister of Health on Thursday, said that there was no known treatment and no preventive vaccines for now to contain the monkey pox virus which reportedly broke out in Bayelsa State.
He has advised the public to be at alert and avoid crowded places as much as possible to be on the safe side.
Speaking in his office, Prof. Adewole said that the health facilities in Bayelsa had been placed on alert, the patients suspected of having monkey pox were quarantined, while supportive treatments were being offered to the victims according to a statement signed by Boade Akinola, Director, Media and Public Relations.
The statement said:“The virus was mild and there was no known treatment and no preventive vaccines hence the public should be at alert and avoid crowded places as much as possible.”
He informed that monkey pox was a viral illness by a group of viruses that included chicken pox and small pox.
“Investigation is still on-going and our partners are working with us on this reported outbreak, while the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), team in Bayelsa state would give support” the Minister assured.
Prof. Adewole said although monkey pox could not be confirmed until laboratory investigations by the World Health Organisation (WHO) referral laboratory in Dakar, Senegal says so, he assured that, monkey pox was milder and had no record of mortality.
The symptoms include headache, fever, back pains and in advanced cases, rashes bigger than those caused by chicken pox.
Anyone with symptoms of monkey pox should immediately report to the nearest health facility, while health workers are advised to maintain a high index of suspicion and observe safety percussion.
He advised the public to avoid eating dead animals, bush meat and particularly bush monkeys.