Lassa fever: NCDC confirms 917 cases, 171 deaths

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The Nigerian centre for disease control (NCDC), has confirmed that, a total of 171 individuals have so far died from the Lassa fever virus in Nigeria in the year 2022.

The latest Lassa fever situation report for week 36, obtained from the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, also indicated that there are 917 confirmed cases of the disease in the country.

The confirmed cases were said to be spread across 25 states and 102 Local Government areas in the country.

The situation report noted further that, “No new healthcare workers had been infected with the viral disease in the reporting week.”

The NCDC also stated that a total of 6,660 suspected cases have been confirmed in the year 2022.

Lassa fever is an animal-borne or zoonotic, acute viral illness spread by the common African rat. The disease is linked with high morbidity and mortality as well as both economic and health security implications.

A breakdown of the report revealed that of all confirmed cases, Ondo has (32%), Edo has (26%), and Bauchi (has 13%).

The report read in part, “In week 36, the number of new confirmed cases decreased from 10 in week 35, 2022 to 8 cases. These were reported from Ondo, Edo, Bauchi, and Anambra States.

“Cumulatively from week 1 to week 36, 2022, 171 deaths have been reported with a case fatality rate (CFR) of 18.6% which is lower than the CFR for the same period in 2021 (23.3%).

“In total for 2022, 25 States have recorded at least one confirmed case across 102 Local Government Areas.

“Of all confirmed cases, 71% are from Ondo (32%), Edo (26%), and Bauchi (13%) States.
“The predominant age group affected is 21-30 years (Range: 0 to 90 years, Median Age: 30 years). The male-to-female ratio for confirmed cases is 1:0.8.

“The number of suspected cases has increased compared to that reported for the same period in 2021.

“No new Healthcare worker affected in the reporting week 36.

“National Lassa fever multi-partner, multi-sectoral Technical Working Group (TWG) continues to coordinate the response activities at all levels,” the agency noted.

Healthcare workers are most at risk of person-to-person transmission of Lassa fever.

“Always maintain a high index of suspicion for Lassa fever and practice standard precaution always while attending to patients,” the NCDC advised.

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