In Nigeria, health authorities confirmed that the total number of Ebola cases in the country has risen to nine. Two people have died of the virus so far including a Liberian man who was the first reported case in Nigeria. Officials say all those infected had direct contact with the man.
If Nigerians were looking for something to cheer about in the country’s fight against the spread of the Ebola virus, what came out of this hall is anything but cheering. Just days ago, health officials had said 70 persons who came in contact with the late Liberian man were being monitored for the possible symptoms of the virus. The Minister says that number has now gone up.
As the number of infected persons slowly build up, the government is now appealing for medical volunteers to help in contact tracing and treatment of patients. Only few doctors are said to have volunteered so far. For now Doctors in public health institutions across the country are on strike. But one them, doctor Omojowolo says the number of volunteers will grow if the government shows genuine commitment to live out its pledge.
The hospital where the seven infected persons are being treated is know as Mainland hospital here in Lagos. The hospital is just down this road. The seven patients who are infected with the virus, we understand are being kept in an isolated ward in the hospital. We’ve actually gone in there but we were not allowed to film. Across the country, rumors of a possible cure for Ebola continue to spread. The latest is advising people to bathe with salt water to avoid contracting the virus. The government now says it will go after the rumor mongers. But then people still remain confident in the face of the Ebola threat.
CCTV America’s Deji badmus reports from Lagos, Nigeria.