Be warned! Ghana issues Zika virus alert

Be warned! Ghana issues Zika virus alert

The Ghana Health Service (GHS) is issuing an emergency alert following a possible discovery of mosquito-borne Zika virus in neighbouring country of Nigeria.

In a supposed letter copied ClassFMonline, and signed by the deputy director of the Western Regional Health Directorate of the GHS, Dr Kofi Asemanyi-Mensah, the health service claims it received an alert from the World Health Organisation (WHO) concerning an outbreak of Dengue Fever in Burkina Faso.

"The GHS has informed authorities at health facilities in the country to enhance surveillance and update prospective preparedness and response for plans for dengue (and other arboviruses: dengue, Chikungunya, Zika, and Yellow Fever). Blood samples of suspected cases should be sent in triple package protection with appropriate and adequately filled case based form and sent to Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research (NMIMR) for laboratory tests,” the statement reveals.

The ZZika virus has been linked to severe birth defects in almost 30 countries. The birth defects include microcephaly, a condition characterised by babies being born with abnormally small heads and restricted brain development.

Zika virus is transmitted through sex. The most common symptoms of Zika Virus Disease are fever, rash, joint pain, and red eyes.

There is no vaccine or specific treatment for the disease. Treatment instead focuses on relieving symptoms and includes rest, dehydration, and medications for fever and pain.

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