After 50 years of the first case of Lassa fever in Nigeria, the country is set to host the first Lassa fever international conference.
This was disclosed by the Chief Executive Officer of Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), Dr. Chikwe Ihekweazu.
Ihekweazu in a statement made available to newsmen on Tuesday in Abuja said the conference would hold between Jan. 16 and Jan. 17, in Abuja.
He added that the conference would avail professionals and key stakeholders to share efforts and challenges in tackling the disease.
He noted that the conference was inspired by a 2018 World Health Organization blueprint that listed Lassa fever among the diseases which needed emergency attention.
“The researchers and practitioners will share and appraise global efforts towards the control of the Lassa fever virus disease.
“In 2018, the World Health Organisation launched its Research and Development blueprint, highlighting the potential of Lassa fever and a selected list of diseases to lead to public health emergencies.
“This plan highlights the absence of efficacious drugs and vaccines, and further highlights the urgent need for accelerated research and development,” he said.
The center earlier called for scientific papers into prevention, detection and control efforts to be showcased at the conference.
According to Ihekweazu, the call “yielded more 500 abstracts from which 160 top quality papers were selected. In addition, travel scholarships were granted to 80 researchers from across Nigeria and West Africa.
”With this, NCDC will work with partners to develop a strong reform agenda for Lassa fever control in Nigeria and globally,” he said. NAN reports that the conference would bring stakeholder together for a meeting full of learning and exchange of ideas.