Cross River Government on Sunday said it had strengthened its surveillance team in border communities and all the local governments of the state as monkey pox outbreak hits some states in South-South.
The Commissioner for Health, Dr Inyang Asibong, disclosed this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Calabar.
“Cross River is not far from other states in the South-South that have witnessed the outbreak, we are working round the clock to prevent the disease in the state.
“As soon as we heard about the outbreak, we took extra precautions. Already, we have a team set up for infection, disease preparedness and control.
“We are always on alert and in constant surveillance of any disease outbreak. We have held several meetings with the state epidemiologists because we believe that prevention is better than cure.
“Currently, we are carrying out sensitisation and advocacy campaigns in communities through community leaders, town announcers and the media,’’ she said.
Asibong said that the state had also taken proactive measures by dispatching its epidemiological team to strategic areas in the state.
She described monkey pox as a rare viral disease transmitted to humans from animals, adding that the first case was noticed in the Democratic Republic of Congo in 1970.
According to her, infection of the disease results from direct contact with the blood, bodily fluids and muscular injury of infected animals.
She said that the incubation period ranged five to 21 days.
According to her, the first five days known as `invasion period’, is characterised by fever, intense headache, swelling of the lymph back pain and others.
The commissioner also described as false, some online reports alleging that a case of monkey pox had been detected in Okuni Village in Ikom Local Government Area of the state.
The commissioner also told NAN that security personnel on border areas across the state had been sensitised about the disease.
She said that an infected person who contacts the disease usually notices symptoms similar to chicken pox and it normally starts from the face, palms and to the sole of the feet.
“We have informed security personnel to look out for these symptoms and alert us accordingly.
“The state government is very responsive to cases of disease outbreak and we pray that the recent outbreak of Monkey Pox will not get to Cross River.’’