LEO Network

22 February 2024 / Punch Newspapers / Lara Adejoro

Lassa fever killed 72 people in six weeks

Lagos, Lagos, Nigeria

The Nigeria Center for Disease Control (NCDC) said no fewer than 2,122 suspected human cases, 411 confirmed cases, and 72 deaths have been recorded from Lassa fever in Nigeria this year.

Comment from Oluwatobi Kehinde:

The recent outbreak of Lassa fever in Lagos State, Nigeria, has sparked concern as the region is considered a non-endemic zone for the disease. The first confirmed case was reported on February 9th, 2024. Alarmingly, within just two weeks of the index case, another individual was also diagnosed with Lassa fever. Both cases had a positive history of travel to endemic zones within the country, raising questions about the potential spread of the disease across regions. Despite receiving medical care, the outcome was fatal for both individuals. This highlights a critical issue often associated with Lassa fever outbreaks: late presentation and delayed detection. These factors significantly contribute to the challenges in managing the disease effectively. The emergence of Lassa fever in Lagos underscores the importance of robust surveillance systems and proactive measures to prevent and control infectious diseases. It serves as a reminder of the need for heightened vigilance and cross border surveillance, especially in areas where the disease is not typically prevalent. Authorities and healthcare professionals must collaborate closely to implement timely interventions and minimize the impact of such outbreaks on public health.

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