Lassa fever prompts ‘emergency’ in Nigeria


23 January 2019| 16 Jumadul Ulaa 1440| Anadolu Agency 

Nigeria declared an “emergency situation” Tuesday due to an outbreak of Lassa fever, according to health authorities.

The Chief Executive Officer of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control Chikwe Ihekweazu said in a statement the country took the action because of an increase of cases.

“As at January 13, a total of 60 confirmed cases have been reported in eight states,” he said.

Ihekweazu said intensive work has started in the fight against the epidemic.

He said in 2018, 3,229 cases were identified in 23 states with 146 people deaths.

Emphasizing the outbreak could continue to spread until April, Ihekweazu urged citizens to maintain hygiene and be careful of contact with mice and other rodents.

Lassa fever is caused by contact with rat urine or feces, and can be transmitted from person to person and causes hemorrhagic fever.