…NCDC warns country at risk of total outbreak

The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has warned that Nigeria is at a very high risk of increased Lassa fever transmission based on a recent risk assessment it conducted on the disease.

Official data from the centre’s report showed that as at 22nd January 2023, a total of 244 confirmed cases with 37 deaths and a case fatality rate of 15.1 percent from 16 states.

To that effect, director-general of the centre, Dr. Ifedayo Adetifa, who gave the warning also disclosed that more states have recorded cases of Lassa fever in recent times.

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In a statement he issued on Monday, Adetifa said the high risk is due to an unprecedented upward trend in the number of confirmed cases being reported compared to previous years.

He also said the number of states reporting cases have increased compared to previous years, adding that the risk of healthcare worker infections and deaths due to Lassa fever infection has also increased.

The 16 affected states are Ondo, Edo, Bauchi, Taraba, Benue, Ebonyi, Nasarawa, Plateau, Kogi, Anambra, Delta, Oyo, Adamawa, Enugu, Imo, and FCT.

Infection and death among the healthcare workers accounted for five and one of the confirmed cases and deaths, respectively, highlighting the need for an increased index of suspicion among healthcare workers.