The Bauchi State Government says it has recorded 16 Lassa fever deaths and 130 confirmed infections in the state. The state Commissioner for Health, Mr Sabi’u Gwalabe disclosed this while briefing newsmen at the end of the State Executive Council (SEC) meeting on Friday in Bauchi.
He said the state recorded deaths and infections since the outbreak of the disease from January to date, adding that the cases were higher than the previous ones.
“We have some outbreaks, especially since we discussed the Lassa fever outbreak during the council meeting. “This year, we had a higher number of Lassa fever suspected cases, 16 deaths, and 130 confirmed cases.
“The mortality rate is 12.4 per cent but even though it’s dropping, there are some parts of the state which are affected more than others,” he said.
He listed the areas worst hit by the disease to include Alkaleri, Kirfi, Bauchi andTafawa Balewa.
The Commissioner said the council also reviewed some of the achievements recorded in the health sector under the Bala Mohammed’s administration. He said the government had rehabilitated and equipped 14 general hospitals and primary healthcare facilities across the state.
According to Gwalabe, the governor will soon inaugurate two modern primary healthcare facilities at Fadamamada and Gida-Dubu in the Bauchi metropolis.
The government, he said, contributed N100 million counterpart fund to the Basic Healthcare Provision Fund, and engaged 200 midwives on a contract basis under the National Primary Healthcare Gateway to address manpower gaps in the sector.
Also speaking, Alhaji Yahuza Adamu, the state Head of Service, said the governor had approved N500 million for payment of gratuities to retirees. He said the state government had adopted effective modalities to upset the backlog of gratuities and improved the welfare of pensioners and those still in service.
“It is a known fact that if there is any issue that bedeviled this government and the government before, it is that of gratuity arrears.
“In an effort to ensure that this ugly trend has not continued, a lasting solution has been sought and implemented.
“The N500 million is for gratuity only and for the record purposes, the Bauchi state government has been paying pension and salaries as and when due,” he said.