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Nigeria’s Lassa fever death toll rises to 92 as Bauchi, Ebonyi record new fatalities

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Lassa Fever

The death toll from Lassa fever in Nigeria has increased to 92 since January, with Bauchi and Ebonyi States recording new fatalities.

The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) disclosed this in its latest situation report on the outbreak of the disease in the country released on Tuesday.

According to the NCDC, three more deaths were reported in week 50 which covered December 13 to 19.

Bauchi reported two new fatalities while Ebonyi recorded one death during the week under review.

Lassa fever is an acute viral illness with haemorrhagic fever. It was first reported in Borno State when two missionary nurses died from an unusual febrile illness.

Since then, Nigeria has continued to report cases and the disease is increasingly becoming endemic in many parts of West Africa including Benin Republic, Ghana, Mali and the Mano River region (Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea).

The report read: “Cumulatively from Week 1 to Week 50, 2021, 92 deaths had been reported with a Case Fatality Rate (CFR) of 20.3 percent, which is lower than the CFR for the same period in 2020 (20.7 percent).”

READ ALSO: Nigeria, two others to begin Lassa fever vaccine trials

The agency noted that a total of 190 new cases were suspected in 11 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), but just 10 cases were confirmed in four states.

These were Edo (2), Ondo (4), Bauchi (3) and Ebonyi (1).

Two of the cases were healthcare workers.

It added; “In total for 2021, 17 states have recorded at least one confirmed case across 66 local government areas.

“Of all confirmed cases, Edo has (43 percent), Ondo (35 percent), and Taraba (five percent).

“The predominant age group affected is between 21 and 30 years (range: 1 to 70 years, Median Age: 29 years). The male to female ratio for confirmed cases is 1:0.9. The number of suspected cases has decreased compared to that reported for the same period in 2020.”

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