LAGOS, Jan. 23 (Xinhua) -- Nigeria's state governors are working with health agencies to intensify efforts to control Lassa fever in the country, a governor said Thursday.
Kayode Fayemi, Chairman of the Nigeria Governors' Forum (NGF), told reporters in Nigeria's capital Abuja that the forum received updates on Lassa fever epidemic.
"I believe all our state are taking precautionary measures to address this in conjunction with the Federal Ministry of Health and the National Center for disease control (NCDC)," he told reporters.
"We are working to ensure that the disease do not spread any further than they have at the moment," Fayemi said.
The spread of the acute viral hemorrhagic fever began at beginning of the year.
At least 19 people, including a pregnant woman and two health workers, have been killed so far by the latest Lassa fever outbreak in Nigeria.
Lassa fever is known to be endemic in several West African countries. Recent epidemiological data show that Lassa fever usually occurs in Nigeria during the dry season between January and April.
Human beings become infected with the Lassa virus from exposure to urine or feces of infected mastomys rats. Other than common preventive measures such as washing hands regularly, the World Health Organization has also recommended keeping cats.