Lassa fever in Nigeria (update)

18 December 2018

Article: 52/5003

From 1 January to 2 December 2018, the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) reported a total of 598 confirmed and probable cases of lassa fever, which includes 164 deaths. Lassa fever is a zoonotic viral disease transmitted via the excreta of an infected Mastomys rat.

Twenty-three states have recorded at least one confirmed case in 92 Local Government Areas (Edo, Ondo, Bauchi, Nasarawa, Ebonyi, Anambra, Benue, Kogi, Imo, Plateau, Lagos, Taraba, Delta, Osun, Rivers, FCT, Gombe, Ekiti, Kaduna, Abia, Adamawa, Enugu and Kano). The outbreak remains active in Edo, Ondo, Plateau, Gombe and Kano States.

Travellers are advised there is a very low risk to their health unless they visit a known viral haemorrhagic fever (VHF) outbreak area, and they should be aware of the risk of infection and transmission routes of the particular VHF. This advice is especially true for medical personnel, who must follow strict infection control guidance. Travellers, who have developed symptoms after returning from affected areas, should seek immediate medical advice.

Further information and advice is available on the TRAVAX (for health professionals) and fitfortravel (for the general public) websites.