Lassa fever claims over 100 in Nigeria


Lassa fever wreaks havoc in Nigeria. File photo

from EMEKA OKONKWO in Abuja, Nigeria
Nigeria Bureau
ABUJA, (CAJ News) – AT least 109 people have died from the outbreak of Lassa fever in Nigeria since the beginning of the year.

The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control and Prevention reported the deaths from 676 confirmed cases as of January 1 to March 5.

This equates to a case fatality rate (CFR) of 16,1 percent, which is lower than the CFR for the same period in 2022 (18,6 percent).

In 2022, during this period, there were 111 deaths from 597 cases of Lassa fever.

In total for 2023, 22 states have recorded at least one confirmed case across 89 local government areas.

Nigeria has 36 states and including the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

Seventy-two (72) percent of all confirmed Lassa fever cases were reported from the states of Bauchi, Edo and Ondo. Ondo is the worst affected with 33 percent of all cases. Edo has 29 percent and Bauchi 10 percent.

The predominant age group affected is 21-30 years.

Nigeria has activated the multi-sectoral Emergency Operations to coordinate the response activities at all levels.

Lassa fever is an acute viral haemorrhagic illness spread by rats.

It is endemic in Nigeria.

The fever was first reported in the town of Lassa, northeastern Borno State in 1969.

– CAJ News



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