WHO has published Lassa Fever – Nigeria. Excerpt:
Between August 2015 and 17 May 2016, WHO has been notified of 273 cases of Lassa fever, including 149 deaths in Nigeria. Of these, 165 cases and 89 deaths have been confirmed through laboratory testing (CFR: 53.9%). The cases were reported from 23 states in Nigeria.
Since August 2015, ten health care workers (HCW) have been infected with Lassa fever virus, of which two have died. Of these ten cases, four were nosocomial infections.
As of 17 May 2016, 8 states are currently reporting Lassa fever cases (suspected, probable, and confirmed), deaths and/or following of contacts for the maximum 21-day incubation period. Currently, 248 contacts are being followed up in the country. The other 15 previously affected states have completed the 42-day period following last known possible transmission.
Public health response
Currently, two national laboratories are supporting the laboratory confirmation of Lassa fever cases by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests. All the samples were also tested for Ebola, Dengue, Yellow fever and so far have tested negative. The two laboratories that are currently operational are:
• Virology laboratory, Lagos University Teaching Hospital
• Lassa fever research and control centre, Irrua specialist hospital
Along with other key partners, WHO is supporting ministry of health in surveillance and response of Lassa fever outbreaks including contacts tracing, follow up and community mobilization. One concern since the onset of Lassa fever outbreaks is the high proportion of deaths among the cases that is still under investigation.