One of the victims of the viral disease, monkeypox, has committed suicide, the Bayelsa State government said on Monday.
The victim allegedly took his own life on Monday at the quarantine centre in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State, located in the Niger Delta University Teaching Hospital, Okolobiri, in Yenagoa Local Government Area of the state.
Addressing journalists on Monday evening in Yenagoa, the state capital, the Commissioner for Health, Ebitimitula Etebu, said the deceased was among the 21 suspected cases of the virus that were being managed at the teaching hospital.
Mr. Etebu was joined at the conference by the Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Daniel Iworiso-Markson, the Chief Medical Director of the NDUTH, Dimie Ogoina, and other senior health officials.
He expressed regret that the patient took his own life despite impressive progress to stem the outbreak by the government. He said the deceased’s medical history did not suggest any mental illness or features of depression.
The health commissioner maintained the patient did not die from the disease, adding that the police and his family had been duly informed and all due diligence was being followed to ensure the safe burial of victim.
Mr. Etebu said that a committee had been put in place to evaluate the deceased’s clinical and social history to shed more light on the tragedy.
He also formally confirmed the outbreak of monkeypox in the state following laboratory evidence from samples sent to the World Health Organisation in Dakar, Senegal.
Sources reported how the health minister, Isaac Adewole, earlier on Thursday, confirmed that three of samples from Bayelsa tested positive to monkeypox.
Mr. Etebu, however, assured the general public again that ”the government was doing everything to contain the outbreak.”
Mr. Iworiso-Markson on his part urged residents to continue to use preventive measures and ensure they avoid bush meat.