UPDATE: Suspected Kaduna Ebola Case Tests Negative

The 19-year old law student of the Ahmadu Bello University [ABU] suspected to manifest some symptoms of the Ebola Virus Disease [EVD] has tested negative to the virus.

Authorities of ABU and the Kaduna State Government had sent the patient’s blood to Lagos for testing after he reportedly manifested some symptoms associated with Ebola while on admission at the Ahmadu Bello University Teaching Hospital [ABUTH].

The state Commissioner For Health, Thot Dogo, had told PREMIUM TIMES Tuesday night that the result of the test was being expected on Wednesday afternoon (today).

But Ebola Alert, an authoritative evidence-driven group of volunteer professionals working on Ebola Virus Disease interventions in the country, told this newspaper laboratory test has shown the student does not have the virus.

An official of the group, who simply identified himself as Ladi, said the test, concluded earlier on Tuesday night, came out negative.

“Yes, it is true that the result is negative,” Ladi said in response to an enquiry by PREMIUM TIMES. “Whatever information Ebola Alert puts out is authentic.”

PREMIUM TIMES had contacted the group after it tweeted on its handle (@EbolaAlert): “The Kaduna rumour is not #Ebola after laboratory test.

“Reaching a diagnosis of #Ebola is dependent on a laboratory test. However close it may be, it is not Ebola until it is Ebola.”

The Federal Ministry of Health and the Kaduna State Government are expected to announce the result of the test later on Wednesday.

The Kaduna Commissioner for Health, Mr. Dogo, had told PREMIUM TIMES that the student had been on admission at the hospital for a week.

He said after he “developed rashes with redness of the eyes”, authorities became suspicious and decided to isolate him and test him for Ebola.

The state government also provided protective equipment to medical officers attending to the patient, Mr. Dogo said.

But in a series of tweets Tuesday, Ebola Alert urged doctors and hospitals to refrain from divulging patients’ information so as not to stigmatize them while also creating panic in society.

It reminded Nigerian doctors and hospitals to note that several other diseases share symptoms with Ebola.

The organization said, “We hope our hospitals will continue to keep health information of their clients and care givers confidential especially #SUSPECTED#EBOLA.

“It is equally important to stay professional by not creating panic in the interest of your staff, patients and country at large. #Ebola

“Several diseases share symptoms with #Ebola and there are other viral haemorrhagic fevers.

“In an #EbolaOutbreak, it is challenging for the healthcare workers to balance between high suspicion and misdiagnosis. Remain professional.

“It will be hard to have public panic if patients #health#information is kept confidential as is #ethically required; even #Ebola patients.

“We hope our colleagues continue to remain professional as we work on this together. #Ebola#HCW#Nigeria Do not put patients’ info out there.

“When you wrongly classify an ill person as an #Ebola patient, we hope you will be around to clean the stigma caused. #CAUTION

“Reaching a diagnosis of #Ebola is dependent on a laboratory test. However close it may be, it is not Ebola until it is Ebola. #CAUTION

“Healthcare is a very responsible and accountable sector. #Ebola will bring out these leadership attributes out of us. Let’s lead now.”


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