The death toll in the unknown ailment that broke out a few days ago at Okpeilo-Otukpa community in Ogbadibo Local Government Area of Benue State has increased to 20.
Also, 15 severe cases have been hospitalized, several others are receiving medical attention while more cases are daily being discovered in the community.
Benue State Director of Public Health, Dr. Terna Kur, who made this known in Makurdi said samples of the victims had been sent to Abuja for diagnosis adding that health personnel in the state were suspecting Hemorrhagic Fever.
Dr. Kur said that “at the state level we are not capable of diagnosing that ailment because it is still a strange development to us. We are only suspecting a Hemorrhagic Fever.
“We have also not been able to decipher what kind of Hemorrhagic Fever it is yet, why because we lack the capacity to diagnose at the level of the state. So we have sent the samples to Abuja. That is where we will be told what it is probable in the next 48 hours.
“We have collected over 20 samples and sent to them. And so far the state has deployed medical personnel to meet with the Local Government team to carry out thorough scrutiny to pick out anyone infected or presenting similar symptoms and have them referred to nearby health facilities including the General Hospital Otukpo and Federal Medical Center annex in Ogbadibo.
“Meanwhile severe cases are referred also to Makurdi. So far from the initial 17 deaths, we now have a total of 20 deaths arising from the ailment since when we received the report.
“As at now we cannot give an accurate figure of the number of persons already down or infected because most cases are yet to be identified because health personnel is still moving from house to house looking for more cases.
“Already about 15 are on admission in hospitals but other cases are being treated in the Out-Patient Department. So we are yet to get the exact number because on day to day basis we are discovering more cases.”