Nigerian Minister of Health, Onyebuchi Chukwu, confirmed on Monday that the country is experiencing their second case of the deadly virus, as a doctor who treated a Liberian national who died from the disease has contracted the virus.
The Health Minister confirmed the positive test result on Monday, stating that the doctor contracted the virus from a patient at a private hospital facility in Lagos. Chukwu further stated that another 70 people believed to have come into contact with the Liberian man are being closely monitored for any symptoms of the disease. Eight of those being monitored have been placed into quarantine, three of whom are allegedly symptomatic.
The doctor confirmed to have contracted the virus is “one of the doctors who attended to the Liberian patient who died” according to Chukwu.
The eight people quarantined have been placed in a specialised care facility in Lagos and blood tests of the three people displaying alleged Ebola-like symptoms have been sent for analysis, with the results yet to be known.
Patrick Sawyer, the Liberian national who died from the disease in Nigeria last week is a member of Liberia’s Finance Ministry. He was travelling to Nigeria for a meeting between various West African officials and apparently contracted the virus from his sister shortly before leaving. He became very ill upon arrival in Lagos and was taken immediately for observation. He died in quarantine in Lagos on July 25. The hospital where he was treated was closed down for an indefinite period of time last week.
The current Ebola outbreak is the deadliest known epidemic in world history, with 1440 people being infected with the virus thus far and a total of 826 confirmed dead to date. The virus is currently plaguing the West African nations of Liberia, Guinea, Sierra Leone and now, Nigeria. Authorities fear the spread of the disease through means such as air travel and stringent measures are being implemented globally at all major airports.