Ebola: UK varsities on alert for Nigerian students, others

Posted: August 18, 2014 in Education, Health, Nigerian Education, Top stories

Thousands of Nigerians admitted into United Kingdom universities appear sure to face tough health screening
as their campuses have been placed on the alert for the danger posed by the Ebola Virus Disease.
According to The Independent on Sunday , the alert by Universities UK, the umbrella body that represents
vice-chancellors, was issued because the universities are expecting new students to arrive from West
Africa.
While the three countries which have seen the largest number of Ebola cases – Liberia, Guinea and Sierra
Leone – have hardly any students enrolling at UK universities, Nigeria – which has also had confirmed cases – is the fourth largest supplier of international students to UK universities.
In 2012-13, the latest year for which figures are available, a total of 9,630 were enrolled. A spokesman for the body said, “The issue is very much on universities’ radars. We circulated to
universities the publicly available guidance on the topic.”
The guidance makes it clear that any student suspected of having Ebola should immediately be isolated in a side room away from any member of
staff or student contact.
“The side room should have dedicated en-suite facilities or at least a dedicated commode,” it says.
“The level of staff protection is dependent on the patient’s condition,” the London-based newspaper  said.
It added that “those having any dealings with the patient must take careful hand hygiene precautions,
wearing double gloves and a disposable visor.
The guidance told university workers that, “evidence from outbreaks strongly indicates that the main
routes of transmission of infection are direct contact (through broken skin or mucous membrane) and indirect contact with environments contaminated with splashes or droplets of blood or body fluids.”
It said that experts “agree that there is no circumstantial or epidemiological evidence of an aerosol transmission risk from patients.”

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