NCDC Confirms 16 New Cases of Lassa Fever in 5 States

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The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) says it has confirmed 16 new cases of Lassa fever from five states in Nigeria.

The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of NCDC, Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu, disclosed this in Abuja on Saturday, while giving update on the disease and efforts by the centre.

He said that the 16 new cases had now brought the number of confirmed cases to 526 out of the 2,034 suspected cases since Jan. 1 in 21 states.

He also said that a total of 121 deaths had been recorded since the outbreak.

Ihekweazu said Edo, Ondo, Bauchi, Ebonyi, Plateau, Taraba, FCT, Adamawa, Gombe, Kaduna, Kwara, Benue, Rivers, Kogi, Enugu, Imo, Delta, Oyo, Kebbi and Cross River states had each recorded at least one confirmed case.

He also confirmed that one health care worker was affected in Plateau state, bringing it to a total of 17 healthcare workers in seven states since the outbreak of the disease.

The NCDC boss also said that 29 patients had been hospitalised at the designated centres.

He said that 10 were hospitalised in Irrua, 9 in Owo, three in Abakiliki, two in Bauchi, three in Plateau, two in Taraba.

Ihekweazu said a total of 6,489 people suspected to have contacts with those infected had been identified across 20 states.

He said that 1,443 of the suspected contacts were being followed up, while 4,983 had completed the mandatory 21 days of follow up and had been declared symptom free.

He also said that 112 symptomatic contacts had been identified, of which 55 tested positive.

The NCDC boss assured that the National Lassa fever multi-partner, multi-sectoral Emergency Operations Centre, will continue to coordinate the response activities at all levels.(NAN)