Since the first case was reported in Lagos, Nigeria on 20 July 2014, the Nigeria Red Cross was actively involved in the Ebola response in various ways. Mr Patrick Sawyer arrived at the International airport in Lagos presenting with signs and symptoms of Ebola and was taken to a private hospital where he was attended to before he died 4 days later. In the process a number of people who attended to him contracted the Ebola Virus Disease (EVD). The Ebola cases spread to Port Harcourt where a primary contact of the first case went for treatment. A total number of 21 cases and 8 deaths were confirmed and 891 contacts were recorded and followed up throughout the country. A total of 12 people were discharged. Nigeria was declared Ebola free on 14 November 2014.
The Nigeria Red Cross in collaboration with IFRC country office trained a total of 354 volunteers in Lagos, Port Harcourt, Oyo, Kaduna, Edo and Enugu to respond to the Ebola operation. The primary focus of the response was on Lagos and Port Harcourt whereas the other towns were for preparedness sake. A total of 22 trainers from the states were trained on Ebola prevention and psychosocial support (PSS). The Volunteers conducted contact tracing, infection control and hygiene promotion, social mobilization/ health promotion. The other volunteers were involved in screening in and out bound passengers at the international and domestic airport in Lagos. It is important to note that 10 volunteers are still working at the International airport in Lagos.
IFRC continues to support the National Society to combat Ebola, through a 5 pillar approach spelled out in the Ebola regional framework. These include: (1) Beneficiary Communication and Social Mobilization; (2) Contact Tracing and Surveillance; (3) Psychosocial Support; (4) Case Management as well as (5) Dead Body Management, Burials and Disinfection. However in Nigeria only the first three pillars were applicable.