NCDC increases intervention for Lassa fever response

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The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) says it is increasing intervention in Lassa fever outbreak response as the outbreak continues with a total of 1,121 suspected cases recorded from the 18 affected states.

According to the weekly epidemiological report issued by the centre, with the  current reporting week ending on February 25, it says “Of this, 361 cases have been classified as 353 confirmed cases, 8 probable cases with 86 deaths (78 in Lab confirmed and 8 in probable) recorded giving a case fatality rate (CFR) of 23.8%”.

The report said the recent escalation of the current Lassa fever outbreak to Level 3 has prompted more deployment of resources to enable quick response activities with the goal of controlling the outbreak.

The report which says Edo, Ondo and Ebonyi states account for 85% of all confirmed cases making them the high burden or hotspot states, makes the centre focused on ensuring that State-specific interventions are employed to control the outbreak.

Some of the interventions include Deployment of Rapid Response Teams (RRTs) to the three high-burden states to provide technical support at the State and facility level in coordinating and implemented outlined strategies

The report also said there were 151 new cases of Acute Flaccid Paralysis (AFP) reported, with none confirmed as Polio.

11 suspected cases of Cholera were reported from three LGAs in three States:Kaduna – 4, Kano – 4 & Oyo – 1). Of these, none was laboratory confirmed and one death was recorded.

44 suspected cases of Lassa fever were reported from 22 LGAs in 10 States (Edo – 6, Ekiti – 2, FCT- 2, Gombe – 1, Kogi – 2, Kwara – 2, Nasarawa – 2, Niger – 2, Ondo – 19, Plateau – 3 & Taraba – 5). 13 were laboratory confirmed and one death was recorded.

210-suspected cases of Cerebrospinal Meningitis (CSM) reported from 58 LGAs in 14 States (Bauchi – 1, Cross River – 1, Ebonyi – 1, FCT – 1, , Gombe – 5, Kaduna – 6, Kano – 2, Katsina – 46, Kebbi – 13, Niger – 11, Sokoto – 40, Taraba – 1, Yobe – 8 & Zamfara – 74). Of these, six were laboratory confirmed and 12 deaths were recorded.

“Ongoing surveillance for CSM has been intensified in all the 26 States in the Nigeria meningitis belt and case-based surveillance commenced from 4th December 2017,” the report says.

There were 517- suspected cases of Measles reported from 36 States. None was laboratory confirmed and one death was recorded.

Bilkisu Pai