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  • Liberia: 2019/2020 Lassa Fever

    Source: https://www.businessghana.com/site/n...fever-outbreak

    Deaths reported in Liberia Lassa fever outbreak
    9h ago | Source: BBC

    The health authorities in Liberia have announced that there is an outbreak of Lassa Fever, which they say has killed at least 21 people, including one healthcare worker, since January this year.

    Liberia's Deputy Health Minister and Chief Medical Officer Francis Kateh told the BBC that more than 90 cases have been reported across the country; but 25, including the 21 deaths, have so far been confirmed...

  • #2
    Outbreaks and Emergencies Bulletin, Week 37: 9 - 15 September 2019
    ...
    Lassa fever Liberia


    36 Cases

    11 Deaths

    41% CFR


    EVENT DESCRIPTION

    Liberia continues to report sporadic cases of Lassa fever. On 8
    September 2019, WHO was notified of two new confirmed cases
    reported from Bong and Grand Bassa Counties in the central part
    of Liberia. The first case is a 30-year-old male laboratory technician
    who was a resident of Suakoko District, Bong County. He reportedly
    presented to a local hospital on 6 August 2019 with fever (≈38.9?C),
    vomiting, general weakness, abdominal pain and anorexia and was
    treated as an out patient for malaria and typhoid fever. Lack of response
    to anti-malarial and antibiotic treatment and subsequent worsening of
    his condition led to admission to a hospital on 19 August 2019, where
    blood samples were collected due to suspicion of viral haemorrhagic
    fever. Test results released by the National Public Health Reference
    Laboratory of Liberia (NPHRL) on 22 August 2019 confirmed the
    case as positive for Lassa virus infection by reverse-transcriptase
    polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). He died on 21 August 2019 while
    undergoing clinical care and a safe and dignified burial was conducted.
    A total of 30 contacts, including 18 healthcare workers, were identified
    and are being monitored.

    The second case is an 11-year-old female resident of District #3A&B,
    Grand Bassa County who presented at a local hospital on 20 August
    2019 with signs and symptoms of fever (>38.5?C), general weakness,
    anorexia, swollen neck, vomiting, cough, and pain in the throat. She
    was unresponsive to anti-malarial treatment administered as an out
    patient, and the attending clinicians suspected a viral haemorrhagic
    fever. She was admitted at the Lassa fever treatment unit and a sample
    taken on 31 August 2019. Test results released by the NPHRL on 2
    September 2019 confirmed the case-patient as positive for Lassa virus
    infection by RT-PCR. In spite of clinical care, the case-patient died
    on 4 September 2019 and safe burial was subsequently conducted
    under the supervision of the district health team. A total of 16 contacts
    including five healthcare workers were listed and are being followed.
    From 1 January to 8 September 2019, a total of 106 suspected cases
    including 22 deaths have been reported across the country. Of 97
    suspected cases sampled, 27 tested positive by RT-PCR at the NPHRL
    while 70 were discarded due to negative test results. Confirmed cases
    have been reported from four counties, namely; Bong (11), Nimba
    (9), Grand Bassa (6), and Grand Kru (1). The case fatality ratio among
    confirmed cases is 41% (n=11) and males are the most affected
    accounting for 52% (n=14) of the confirmed cases. In total, 122
    contacts have been listed and are currently under follow-up in the Bong
    and Grand Bassa Counties.


    PUBLIC HEALTH ACTIONS

    The response to Lassa fever outbreaks continues to be
    coordinated at sub-national level under the leadership of the
    county health teams with technical and logistical support from
    the National Public Health Institute of Liberia (NPHIL), Liberia?s
    Ministry of Health, WHO Liberia Country Office, the US Centre for
    Disease Control and Prevention Liberia Office, and a host of other
    partners. The National Epidemic Preparedness and Response
    Committee (NEPRC) involving NPHIL, WHO, and other technical
    institutions continue to monitor the situation across the country
    and provide support to response efforts.

    National-level multidisciplinary teams have been dispatched to
    enhance further investigation and strengthen response actions at
    the county level. Case investigation, contact tracing, and active
    case search are ongoing in the affected counties. Screening
    tools have been distributed to health facilities to aid in the early
    identification of cases.

    The National Public Health Reference Laboratory of Liberia
    (NPHRL) continues to conduct tests for viral haemorrhagic fevers
    including Lassa fever. Couriers are stationed at designated points
    across the country for transportation of specimens to the NPHRL
    for testing.

    There is currently one case-patient at the Lassa fever treatment centre in Bong
    County undergoing clinical care. A refresher of health workers on clinical
    management of Lassa fever cases is being planned.

    Exposure risk assessment for healthcare workers is being routinely conducted as
    part of investigation missions. These missions are also used to conduct infection
    prevention and control assessments as well as mentoring of staff in affected and
    circumscribed facilities.

    Risk communication and community engagement activities targeting affected
    households and communities are ongoing through town hall meetings, including
    messages on risk factors for exposure to the disease, as well as preventive
    strategies, including safe handling and storage of food items and environmental
    cleanliness.

    SITUATION INTERPRETATION

    Lassa fever is endemic in parts of Liberia and sporadic cases are reported year-round
    with a peak in the dry season, which begins in November. The traditional Lassa fever
    belt in the country appears to be expanding with confirmed autochthonous cases being
    reported from the south eastern region not previously known to be endemic for the
    disease. Furthermore, response efforts seem to be challenged by late detection of cases
    leading to high case fatality ratio, stock out of ribavirin used to treat Lassa fever, and
    sub-optimal vector control activities. As the country approaches the beginning of the
    dry season, it is anticipated that the number of cases will increase. Government and
    partners need to step up efforts aimed at strengthening early detection and treatment
    of cases, improving infection control and prevention practices in healthcare facilities, as
    well as engaging communities and enhancing vector control activities.


    https://www.afro.who.int/node/11740
    https://apps.who.int/iris/bitstream/...0915092019.pdf
    "Safety and security don't just happen, they are the result of collective consensus and public investment. We owe our children, the most vulnerable citizens in our society, a life free of violence and fear."
    -Nelson Mandela

    Comment


    • #3
      Source: https://www.journalducameroun.com/en...ak-in-margibi/


      Liberia reports Lassa Fever outbreak in Margibi
      Published on 24.10.2019 at 13h21 by APA News


      Reports from Liberia’s Margibi County on Thursday say there is an outbreak of Lassa Fever in the county that has left one person dead and several others infected.According to a situation report (Sitrep) issued by the Margibi County Health Team signed by the County Health Officer, (CHO), Dr. Myers Chea Pajibo Tuesday, on October 14, an 18 year-old female received treatment at C. H. Rennie Memorial Hospital in Kakata after being provided healthcare at another facility at the Salala Rubber Corporation (SRC).

      The patient was suspected of Lassa fever after failing to respond to treatment for malaria and typhoid.

      According to the Margibi report, specimen was collected from the patient and sent to the National Reference Laboratory (NRL), which proved positive of Lassa fever. The patient died during the fourth day of admission at the C. H. Rennie Hospital.

      The report said new cases seen to date include one suspected and one probable case who made contact with the deceased, while other suspected cases are unrelated to the confirmed case.

      The report further revealed that the total number of contacts to date is 44, including 30 healthcare workers...

      Comment


      • #4
        Source: https://www.liberianobserver.com/new...ever-outbreak/


        Gov’t Calls for Vigilance Amid Lassa Fever Outbreak
        By William Q. Harmon -
        November 11, 2019

        The Government of Liberia (GoL), through the Ministry of Health (MOH) and the National Public Institute of Liberia (NPHIL), has called on citizens to become more vigilant against reports of an outbreak of Lassa fever.

        The ministry said it is placing the public on the alert, barely two months after health authorities declared a health emergency as a result of an outbreak of Lassa fever that has already claimed about 21 lives.

        The call comes at a time when the Lassa fever virus is stubbornly stamping a foothold in the country.

        Acting Director-General of the National Public Health Institute (NPHIL), Dr. Mosoka Fallah, told reporters that the disease has so far affected five of the 15 counties...



        Comment


        • #5
          WEEKLY BULLETIN ON OUTBREAKS
          AND OTHER EMERGENCIES
          Week 49: 2 - 8 December 2019
          Data as reported by: 17:00; 8 December 2019

          ...
          Lassa fever Liberia

          95 Cases
          20 Deaths
          21% CFR


          EVENT DESCRIPTION

          Lassa fever remains a public health challenge in Liberia, with
          increasing number of new cases seen in recent weeks. In week
          47 (week ending 24 November 2019), five new confirmed Lassa
          fever cases with two deaths were reported from two counties:
          Grand Bassa (4 cases, 1 death) and Nimba (1 case, 1 death).

          The case-patient from Nimba County was a 19-year-old pregnant
          female resident of Sanniquellie Mah district, an area known to
          be endemic for Lassa fever in Liberia. She presented to a local
          hospital on 19 November 2019, nine days after symptom onset.

          The diagnosis of Lassa fever was confirmed on 22 November
          2019 when test results returned positive for Lassa virus infection
          by reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR)
          at the National Public Health Reference Laboratory of Liberia
          (NPHRL). She died while undergoing clinical care. The four
          cases from Grand Bassa County were residents of District #3A,
          another area known to be endemic for the disease, and were
          notified to the national authorities between 18 and 24 November
          2019. The case-patients presented to a local hospital in the and
          were confirmed for Lassa virus infection by RT-PCR.

          From 1 January to 24 November 2019, a cumulative total of 169
          suspected Lassa fever cases were reported across the country.
          Of the 169 suspected cases, 120 were sampled and tested for
          Lassa fever by reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction
          (RT-PCR) at the National Public Health Reference Laboratory of
          Liberia (NPHRL), with testing 46 positive and 74 negatives. Of
          the 46 confirmed cases, 14 died, giving a case fatality ratio of
          30%) among confirmed cases.

          The confirmed cases originated from five counties, namely;
          Grand Bassa (17 cases, 3 deaths), Bong (14 cases, 6 deaths),
          Nimba (10 cases, 3 deaths), Montserrado (2 cases, 1 death),
          Grand Kru (2 cases, zero deaths), and Margibi (1 case, 1 death).
          The median age of the confirmed cases is 25.5 years (IQR 14
          – 39). Females constitute 61% (n=28) of the confirmed cases.
          The case fatality ratio is 44.4% (8/18) among males and 21.4%
          (6/28) among females. A total of 179 contacts are currently
          being followed across four counties.

          PUBLIC HEALTH ACTIONS

          Public health responses to Lassa fever events continue to
          be mounted at the sub-national level under the leadership of
          the respective County Health Teams (CHT). At the national
          level, the National Public Health Institute of Liberia (NPHIL),
          with support from WHO, US CDC, and other partners
          continue to monitor the situation and provide technical
          support in responding to these events.

          In the affected counties, enhanced surveillance including
          active case search, case investigation and contact tracing
          are ongoing. Outbreak case definitions as well as screening
          tools for triaging patients are being used at local health
          facilities for case identification.

          Dedicated treatment centres for Lassa fever remain operational across
          designated sites. There are two case-patients currently in admission at
          the treatment centre in Grand Bassa County. WHO has donated 375 doses
          of ribavirin to support clinical management of cases and these are being
          propositioned at designated treatment centres. Mentoring of healthcare
          workers on standard and transmission-based infection control and
          prevention practices are routinely undertaken.

          Community engagement and risk communication activities are being
          routinely implemented in affected communities as part of outbreak
          response measures.

          SITUATION INTERPRETATION

          The current increase in cases of Lassa fever in Liberia could be an indication of
          the start of the peak seasonal pattern, which usually begins at the onset of the
          dry season. Changes in ecological and environmental factors over the years,
          coupled with improve surveillance for Lassa fever, continue to lead to the yearly
          increasing trend of Lassa fever cases reported. The primary factors that expose
          people to infectious rodents remain in the community and need to be tackled.
          The national authorities and partners in Liberia need to strengthen surveillance
          for early detection and management of cases. Additionally, engagement with the
          communities and mainstreaming the One Health approach into preparedness and
          response activities are crucial to reducing Lassa fever morbidity and mortality.

          https://apps.who.int/iris/bitstream/...9-09122019.pdf
          "Safety and security don't just happen, they are the result of collective consensus and public investment. We owe our children, the most vulnerable citizens in our society, a life free of violence and fear."
          -Nelson Mandela

          Comment


          • #6
            Source: https://www.liberianobserver.com/new...ak-in-liberia/


            Health Authorities Declare Continuous Lassa Fever Outbreak in Liberia
            By Webmaster Admin -
            January 10, 2020

            Following the recent detection of several Lassa fever cases across four counties, the National Public Health Institute of Liberia (NPHIL), in collaboration with the Ministry of Health, announces that Liberia has experienced a continuous Lassa fever outbreak.

            The NPHIL National Reference Laboratory has recently confirmed two Lassa fever cases at the ELWA Hospital in Montserrado County. The first case was confirmed on December 30, while the second was confirmed on January 6, 2020. The first case was a 30-year old female who expired on December 28, 2019, while the second case is a medical doctor who was infected by a Lassa fever patient that expired at the CH Rennie Hospital. The doctor is recuperating well.

            Also, on December 30, 2019, a Lassa fever case was reported from District #3 A/B, Grand Bassa County. This case is a 20-year old female who is being treated at the LAC Hospital in Grand Bassa County along with two other Lassa fever Cases.

            Meanwhile, Lofa County reported two confirmed cases of Lassa fever on December 19, 2019 and January 8, 2020 respectively. Both cases expired and received safe and dignified burials.

            A confirmed Lassa fever case was reported from the CH Rennie Hospital in Margibi County on December 18, 2019. The case was a 30-year old female that had gone for treatment for septic abortion, but there was a suspicion of Lassa fever. A sample was collected and tested positive for Lassa fever. The patient died in the isolation unit, and safe and dignified burial was performed by the Margibi County Health Team.

            According to a release issued in Monrovia, from January 1, 2019 to December 31, 2019, NPHIL, through the National Reference Laboratory, recorded 50 confirmed cases of Lassa fever. Of the 50 cases, 18 deaths were recorded, a Case Fatality Rate (CFR) of 36%. This 2019 CFR is a significant improvement compared to the 2018 CFR of 66%...

            Comment


            • #7
              Source: https://frontpageafricaonline.com/co...ith-the-virus/

              Liberia: Lassa Fever Kills 3 in Grand Bassa; over 20 Infected with the Virus
              By FPA Staff Reporter On Jan 17, 2020

              Buchanan, Grand Bassa County – The Surveillance Officer of Grand Bassa County Health team has confirmed to FrontPage Africa that there is a Lassa Fever outbreak in District #4, Grand Bassa County leading to 3 deaths and 20 others confirmed infected with the virus .

              Gabriel B. Kassay said over 60 specimens were taken to Monrovia for testing as a result of the outbreak.

              “Out of the 60 plus, over 20 specimens were confirmed affected with Lassa fever,” he said, adding that three persons have died from the disease at the Liberia Agricultural Company (LAC) concession area in Wee Statutory District.

              Kassay said there were several incidents of Lassa fever in the LAC plantation area in 2019...

              Comment


              • #8

                WEEKLY BULLETIN ON OUTBREAKS
                AND OTHER EMERGENCIES
                Week 4: 20 - 26 January 2020
                Data as reported by: 17:00; 26 January 2020
                ...
                Liberia Lassa fever Ungraded 23-Jan-19 1-Jan-20 24-Jan-20 21 21 7 33.30%

                The protracted Lassa fever outbreak in Liberia continues to evolve. Between 1 to 24 January 2020, a total of 21 confirmed cases including 7 deaths (CFR-33.3%)
                have been recorded. Of samples tested from 27 of the suspected cases at the National Public Health Reference Laboratory of Liberia, 21 were confirmed by RT-PCR
                and 6 were discarded due to negative test results. A total of 299 contacts from six counties are under follow up.
                ...

                https://apps.who.int/iris/bitstream/...2026012020.pdf
                "Safety and security don't just happen, they are the result of collective consensus and public investment. We owe our children, the most vulnerable citizens in our society, a life free of violence and fear."
                -Nelson Mandela

                Comment


                • #9
                  Source: http://outbreaknewstoday.com/liberia...a-fever-45925/
                  Liberia reports increase in Lassa fever
                  by News Desk
                  February 4, 2020

                  The Liberia Ministry of Health reports an increase in Lassa fever cases since the beginning of the year. In just the week ending Jan. 26, the country saw 10 confirmed cases.

                  Since the beginning of 2020, the West African country reported a cumulative total of 55 suspected cases has been recorded across the country...

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    WEEKLY BULLETIN ON OUTBREAKS
                    AND OTHER EMERGENCIES

                    Week 5: 27 January - 2 February 2020
                    Data as reported by: 17:00; 2 February 2020
                    ...
                    Lassa fever Liberia

                    24 Cases
                    9 Deaths
                    37.5% CFR

                    EVENT DESCRIPTION

                    Liberia continues to experience sporadic cases of Lassa fever
                    following declaration of the outbreak by the Ministry of Health in
                    August 2019. However, since the beginning of 2020, a significant
                    increase in the number of new cases has been observed. In week
                    4 (week ending 26 January 2020), 10 confirmed Lassa fever cases
                    have been reported, compared to seven cases in week 3 and five
                    cases in week 2. Between 1 and 28 January 2020, a cumulative total
                    of 55 suspected cases has been recorded across the country. Among
                    these, a total of 24 confirmed cases with nine associated deaths has
                    been reported from nine health districts in six counties. The majority
                    11(45%) of confirmed cases came from Grand Bassa county, Bong
                    (9), Lofa (1), Margibi (1), Montserrado (1) and Nimba (1). The
                    overall case fatality ratio among the 24 confirmed cases was 37.5%.
                    The age range among confirmed cases is 1 to 53 years old, with a
                    median of 26.5 years. Males constitute (52%) of confirmed cases
                    as compared to their female counterparts at 48%. Three healthcare
                    workers have been infected since the beginning of 2020, with one
                    associated death.

                    Since 1 January 2020, a total of 928 contacts have so far been listed,
                    53% of whom are still being closely monitored while the rest have
                    completed the 21-day follow up without showing symptoms.

                    PUBLIC HEALTH ACTIONS

                    Outbreak response activities are being implemented and
                    coordinated at the county level (incident management system
                    (IMS) under the leadership of the County Health officers (CHOs)
                    with technical, logistical and financial support from the Ministry
                    of Health, National Public Health Institute of Liberia (NPHIL), US
                    Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World
                    Health Organization (WHO) field offices.

                    Multidisciplinary outbreak response teams have been deployed
                    to support affected communities in Lofa, Margibi, Bassa, and
                    Bong counties by NPHIL and WHO. Surveillance has been
                    enhanced in the affected counties, including active case search,
                    identification and follow-up of contacts.

                    Infection prevention and control measures are being strengthened
                    in the community and healthcare facilities in Lofa, Margibi,
                    Bassa, and Bong counties including building the capacity of safe
                    and dignified burial teams.

                    Risk communication activities are ongoing in affected
                    communities through the dissemination of information,
                    education and communication (IEC) messages via talk shows
                    and jingles, in addition to community engagement.

                    SITUATION INTERPRETATION

                    Lassa fever is endemic in parts of Liberia, including Bong, Grand Bassa,
                    Montserrado, Lofa, Margibi and Nimba counties, which continue to
                    report sporadic cases annually. A periodic upsurge in incidence cases
                    is typically observed between December and June. Occasionally, these
                    periodic increases become escalated, causing large outbreaks – as was
                    the case in Nigeria in 2017-2018. Member States in the region are thus
                    encouraged to improve preparedness activities for Lassa fever prior
                    to the seasonal period, mainly focusing on improving early detection
                    and reporting, case management and IPC, community engagement and
                    hygiene, and routine universal precautions in healthcare settings.
                    Importantly, mitigating human and vector (rats) interaction need to be
                    prioritized to decrease recurrence of Lassa fever outbreak. To achieve
                    this, it requires effective social mobilization and community engagement
                    strategies targeting vector control and environmental management
                    especially in endemic areas.

                    https://apps.who.int/iris/bitstream/...0102022020.pdf
                    "Safety and security don't just happen, they are the result of collective consensus and public investment. We owe our children, the most vulnerable citizens in our society, a life free of violence and fear."
                    -Nelson Mandela

                    Comment

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