Lassa Fever: Don’t drink garri with cold water – NMA Chairman

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Residents of Port Harcourt have been advised to stop
drinking garri soaked in cold water for now, because rats
that carry the highly contagious Lassa fever virus also like
exposed dry garri.
Dr. Furo Green, the Chairman of Rivers State branch of
Nigerian Medical Association, NBA, gave this medical advice,
while speaking on the Lassa Fever scourge in Port Harcourt,
the Rivers State Capital.He said
“Because you are not sure which garri has been infected by
rats, its advisable to stay away. When you want to sip garri,
you only pour cold water, add sugar and milk as the case
may be.
“When you do that you only succeed in gulping a life virus
that can cause Lassa fever. The virus is empowered easily
to attack you. Rather, garri should be consumed in the
traditional way prepare it well boiled hot water or pour the
garri in a pot of boiling hot water and steer it.”
Dr. Green also advised members of the public to store food
in closed containers to keep rats at bay. “When you buy
foodstuffs like garri, you should pour it into a container that
is covered to avoid the garri from being contaminated
infected rats”.
Since the outbreak of Lassa fever disease, three people have
died in Rivers state, claiming the life of a medical doctor
with the state-owned Braithwaite Memorial Specialised
Hospital (BMHS), Livy Ijamala, on Wednesday January 13
The medical doctor was said to have contracted the fever
from a pregnant woman that conducted an emergency
Cesarean Section unknown to him that she was infected.
The death of Ijamala brought to three, the number of
persons who have died from the disease in the state, as a
nursing mother and her two-week-old baby died earlier
from the virus.

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