Ebola Scare Hits Calabar: One Dead; Doctor, 9 Nurses, 4 UCTH Health Workers Quarantined

Fifteen persons have been quarantined at the accident and emergency ward of the University of Calabar Teaching Hospital after an Ebola Virus Disease scare in the hospital on Wednesday.


Those quarantined included nine nurses, one doctor, four health workers and one patient.

The EVD scare in the UCTH resulted from the death of a patient, who was said to have manifested the symptoms of the killer disease though the hospital authorities said the patient might have died of any Haemorrhagic fever.

The patient’s identity as of Thursday remained unknown.

Chairman of the Medical Advisory Committee of the teaching hospital, Dr. Queeneth Kalu, said the blood sample of the patient had been sent for testing while identified contacts had been quarantined.

At a press briefing in Calabar on Thursday, Kalu said that the National Centre for Disease Control, the Federal Ministry of Health and the Cross River State Government as well as the Department of State Services had been informed of the development.

She said, “On Wednesday October 7, 2015, we managed a patient who presented with symptoms mimicking viral haemorrhagic fever. Due to the remote chance of it being contagious, we have sent the blood samples for testing and quarantined identified contacts.

“Further information will be made available as soon as we receive the results of the samples sent for analysis.”

Also at the briefing, Deputy Chairman of the Medical Advisory Committee, Dr. Edet Ikpi, said all necessary precautions as prescribed by the World Health Organisation had been taken to forestall any eventuality. He however said that there was no cause for panic by members of the public.

Ikpi urged the media to be cautious of what was being reported as no case of EVD had been established.

The Federal Government on Thursday confirmed that it had despatch a team of medical experts to the UCTH.

The Director, Nigerian Centre for Disease Control, Prof. Abdulsalami Nasidi, told The PUNCH that the team was already on ground in Calabar.

“The NCDC team is on ground and containment measures are already being put in place. The samples are being tested and we should know by tomorrow (today). The Federal Ministry of Health is sending additional support on Friday (today),” Nasidi said.