Bauchi, Plateau, Taraba Among Top States with Lassa Fever Cases

In a recent epidemiological update by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (NCDC), Bauchi and Plateau States came second and third with the cases of Lassa fever cases across Nigeria in week 13 of 2024.

NCDC explained that 62% of the confirmed cases have originated from three states: Ondo, Edo, and Bauchi, with Ondo reporting 24% of the cases, Edo 22%, and Bauchi 16%. The remaining 38% of cases were reported across 24 other states.

The report partly read “In week 13, the number of new confirmed cases decreased from 25 in epi week 12, 2024 to 15. These were reported in Ondo, Bauchi, Plateau and Edo States.”

Of the two top Northern states – Bauchi and Plateau – in the week 13 update, Plateau was among the states with the least number of cases but surged in the 13th week with 6 suspected cases and 2 confirmed. While Bauchi has 40 suspected cases and 4 cases already confirmed.

However, the centre maintained that Bauchi and Taraba States topped the Northern States with high cases of the pandemic recorded from week 1 – 13 (January 1 to March 31).

While Bauchi State recorded 127 confirmed cases and 28 deaths, Taraba State – both in the Northeast – recorded 95 cases and 20 deaths.

Despite the decrease in weekly cases, the cumulative death toll from the outbreak reached 150 by week 13, marking an 18.6% case fatality rate (CFR), which is a noticeable increase from the 17.5% CFR reported during the same period in 2023.

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The report explained that the total number of confirmed cases since the beginning of 2024 spanned 27 states and 125 local government areas. “Cumulatively from week 1 to 13, 2024, 150 deaths have been reported with case fatality rate (CFR) of 18.6% which is higher than the CFR for the same period in 2023(17.5%).”

41 persons die of lassa fever in Bauchi

The age group most affected by Lassa fever remains individuals aged 31-40 years, with a range spanning from 1 to 98 years and a median age of 32 years. The gender distribution among confirmed cases is evenly split, with a male-to-female ratio of 1:1.

Interestingly, while the number of suspected Lassa fever cases at the national level has increased compared to the same period in 2023, no new infections were reported among healthcare workers in week 13.

Comparatively, there is an increase from 4338 to 5295 in 2023 and 2024 within the same period.

NCDC urged the public and healthcare providers to maintain vigilance and adhere to recommended preventive measures.

In 2022, the Bauchi State government promised to inaugurate two modern primary healthcare facilities at Fadamamada and Gida-Dubu in the Bauchi metropolis to help mitigate the disease.

The state government added that it contributed N100 million counterpart fund to the Basic Healthcare Provision Fund, and engaged 200 midwives on a contract basis under the National Primary Healthcare Gateway to address manpower gaps in the sector.

Years later, the pandemic is still gaining momentum, threatening the health of the people of the state.

Lassa fever, also known as Lassa hemorrhagic fever, is a type of viral hemorrhagic fever caused by Lassa virus (LASV) carried by Mastomys (multimammate) rats, which live in countries in West Africa, with symptoms including fever, weakness, headaches, vomiting, and muscle pains. Lassa virus can damage your blood vessels and lower your blood’s ability to clot, causing uncontrolled bleeding.

It spreads from contact with infected rat faeces or urine, which can contaminate food or surfaces. One can also get it from contact with the body fluids of people infected with the virus.

Keeping rodents out of homes and food supplies, effective personal hygiene, and disposing of garbage far from the home are some of the measures to help control Lassa fever.


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