The Nigerian health authority has confirmed 48 cases of Lassa fever in the country after it claimed two lives in two northern states in one week.
According to a situation report by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) on Saturday, the 48 confirmed cases out of 222 suspected cases were reported in 20 local government areas of 10 states during the period from January 3 to January 9, with two deaths recorded in the northern states of Taraba and Benue respectively.
The NCDC has activated the alert mode of the national emergency operations center for effective multi-sectoral, multidisciplinary coordination of the Lassa fever response, said the report.
It said seven Lassa fever molecular laboratories in the NCDC network are working at full capacity to ensure that all samples are tested and results are provided within the shortest turnaround time.
Lassa fever is usually transmitted when the saliva, urine, and excreta of the multi-mammalian rats come into contact with humans through their food or water. In some cases, Lassa fever has similar symptoms to malaria.
The disease has killed at least 80 people in 2021 across the country, according to the NCDC.