NAN – Abuja residents have begun to adjust their lifestyles to avoid contracting the Ebola virus, a survey has shown.
The virus has claimed over 700 lives in West African, including Patrick Sawyer, a Liberian who died in Nigeria after contracting the virus in his country.
A civil servant, Mrs Janet Obinna, said that she had embraced the habit of regularly washing her hands and other sanitary measures as experts had advised.
Obinna said that contrary to her husband’s preference for bush meat in the meal, the family had resorted to eating goat meet and beef.
“Before, my husband would not do without bush meat but now we have agreed not to buy or even eat it outside the home.
“We used to wash our hands before but not as often as we do now with this Ebola virus around,’’ she said.
Mr Paul Nzekwu, a businessman, said after he watched news about the virus he realised it was more dangerous than HIV.
Nzekwu said although he did not eat bush meat he had taken it upon himself to educate his friends on the dangers of consuming such meat.
“I was so scared that I could not even visit a friend that was suffering from fever. I think we need more awareness on this Ebola,’’ he said.
Nzekwu said unhygienic persons would now be compelled to embrace hygiene because `the fear of Ebola is the beginning of wisdom.”
A Taxi driver, Mr Joe Osayi, said that he had learnt that Ebola virus could be contacted from the consumption of bush meat and handshakes and as such had restrained from eating bush meat.
“Governments need to create more awareness on this virus because we now hear different stories about it everyday,’’ Osayi said.
Another respondent, Mr Frank Yahaya, said he would not enter any vehicle that carried a sick person to avoid close contact with such person.
Yahaya said he was aware that good hygiene practice could help in the prevention of the virus.
“From what we have heard on television, though Ebola is a very deadly disease, when you maintain high personal hygiene you can prevent it.
“Hygiene such as washing of hands at all times prevents the spread of diseases.
“I learnt it could be transmitted by fluids, blood, semen and sweat from an infected person and to prevent it we should ensure regular hand washing,” he said.
World Health Organisation (WHO) says Ebola virus, formerly known as Ebola haemorrhagic fever, is a severe illness, with fatality rate of up to 90 per cent.
WHO describes Ebola as one of the world’s most virulent diseases.
It said that “the infection is transmitted by direct contact with the blood, body fluids and tissues of infected animals or people.
“Severely ill patients require intensive supportive care. During an outbreak, those at higher risk of infection are health workers, family members and others in close contact with sick people and deceased patients.’’