The Federal Government on Friday called for increased surveillance at all entry points into Nigeria following the lingering Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Government directed all Port Health Service officials and other relevant agencies at such points of entry to heighten surveillance and ensure that all passengers coming into the country are screened.
The Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Health, Mr. Abdulaziz Abdullahi Mashi, on an inspection visit to Port Health facilities at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Ikeja, said that any suspected case must be presented for relevant tests in line with the global practice on disease emergency control and prevention.
Mashi, who was accompanied by other top officials of the ministry and those of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), said he wanted to ascertain the level of preparedness of Nigeria for the worst.
He said: “More doctors, nurses and other health officials would be deployed in the Port Health Services at the airport. Consumables required for day-to-day activities at the airport would also be adequately provided.”
Mashi met with the Permanent Secretary in the Lagos State Ministry of Health, Dr. Titilayo Goncalves, and hailed the state for its preparedness and surveillance system against Ebola.
He said the Federal Ministry of Health and Lagos State Ministry of Health had been working together to forestall the importation of any disease into the country and called for continuous collaboration.
He said: “Lagos State is the entry point of most of the visitors to Nigeria. Therefore, there is need to heighten the surveillance system”.
Responding, Dr. Goncalves dismissed social media reports about an Ebola virus carrier in Nigeria.
She said the person in question was tested and the result was negative.
“I want to authoritatively tell you that the patient was tested and the result was negative. She is well and has been discharged. Everybody should put his mind to rest; there is no Ebola in Lagos”, she said.