Lassa fever is prevented in any environment by promoting good `community hygiene` to create uncomfortable environment for rodents.
Lassa fever virus is transferred from its host to humans, therefore it can be prevented by avoiding contact with Mestomes rodents, especially in the geographic regions where outbreaks occur, ensure you don`t use these rodents as a food source.
Other effective measures you can take include disposing of garbage properly, storing foodstuffs or grains in rodent-proof containers, far from the home. Mestomes rats are so abundant in endemic areas, this will make eliminating them from the environment so difficult, therefore use different rat poisoning and traps always.
While caring for a sick patients with this disease, avoid further transmission of the Lassa fever disease by taking preventive precautions against contact with patient secretions (called VHF isolation precautions or barrier nursing methods). Such precautions include using protective materials or clothing, such as gloves, masks, goggles, gowns, etc. Also using infection control measures, such as isolating infected patients from contact with unprotected persons until the disease has run its course and complete equipment sterilization.
Furthermore, educate people in high-risk areas like in Nigeria, about ways to decrease rodent populations in their homes. This will help aid in the control and prevention of Lassa fever. Research is presently under way to discover a vaccine for Lassa fever.
Conclusion on Lassa Fever Virus
People living in areas of West Africa are most at risk of the Lassa fever virus and also humans exposed to the rat that transmits the infection also have a higher risk of being exposed to the Lassa fever.
The virus is fatal for only about 1% of infected people. The incubation period of this disease/virus ranges from 2 to 21 days. The onset of this disease when it is symptomatic is usually gradual, starting with general weakness, fever and even malaise.
Person to person infections and laboratory transmission can also occur, particularly in the health care settings and in absence of adequate infection prevention control measures.
Early supportive care with rehydration and symptomatic treatment improves survival for patients with Lassa fever. There is still a need for a more proactive measures towards the eradication of this illness both at primary, secondary and tertiary levels of health care.