Health

April 22, 2024

Lassa fever: NCDC maintains surveillance as 152 die

lassa fever

By Sola Ogundipe

Nigeria recorded a cumulative total of 152 Lassa fever deaths during the first 15 weeks of 2024 in 126 Local Government Areas of 27 states in the country with a Case Fatality Ratio, CFR, of 18.3 percent.

The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control and Prevention, NCDC, which announced this development in its Lassa fever situation report Epi week 15, 8th -14th April 2024, noted that out of a total of 5,669 suspected cases, 832 were confirmed with 17 probable cases.

According to the report, the number of deaths is equal to the death toll over the same period in 2023 during which a cumulative total of 4,702 suspected cases, 877 of which were confirmed with five probably cases with CFR of 17.3 percent.

Further, the agency explained that in week 15 of 2024, the number of new confirmed cases increased from 11 in epi week 14, 2024 to 15 with a CFR of 6.7 percent. The cases were reported in Bauchi, Edo, and Ondo States.

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“Cumulatively from week 1 to 15, 2024, 152 deaths have been reported with a case fatality rate of 18.3 percent which is higher than the CFR for the same period in 2023 (17.3 percent),” the report noted.

 The agency confirmed that in total for 2024, 27 States have recorded at least one confirmed case across 126 LGAs with 65 percent of all confirmed Lassa fever cases reported from Ondo, Edo, and Bauchi, while 35 percent were reported from 24 states with confirmed Lassa fever cases.

“Of the 65 percent confirmed cases, Ondo reported 25 percent, Edo 23 percent, and Bauchi 17 percent with the predominant age group affected is 31-40 years”, the NCDC stated, pointing out that the male-to-female ratio for confirmed cases is 1:1 even as the number of suspected cases increased compared to that reported for the same period in 2023.

No new healthcare worker was affected in the reporting week 15, the agency noted, as it emphasized that the National Lassa fever multi-partner, multi-sectoral Incident Management System had been activated to coordinate response at all levels at the Emergency Operations Centre, EOC.