Namibia reports fatal case of Crimean-Congo haemorrhagic fever

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WINDHOEK, May 24 (Xinhua) -- Namibia has confirmed one case of Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever (CCHF) that resulted in the death of the patient, according to the country's Ministry of Health and Social Services.

The case was detected on May 21 at the state hospital in Windhoek, the capital of Namibia, according to a statement issued by the ministry Tuesday.

A suspected CCHF patient sought treatment at a private facility in Gobabis on May 16 and was transferred to a private hospital the following day. As the patient's condition worsened, leading to referral to a state hospital on May 18, where blood samples were collected for investigation, but unfortunately, the patient passed away on the same day, but the CCHF disease was confirmed on May 21, read the statement.

In response to the confirmed case, the health ministry identified a total of 27 contacts, consisting of 24 health workers, one coworker and two household contacts of the deceased.

These individuals are currently being closely monitored for any signs or symptoms of the disease, the ministry said.

Namibia has seen CCHF outbreaks previously between 2017 and 2020, resulting in a total of six confirmed cases and three fatalities.

To effectively manage the current situation, a health emergency task force has been activated to oversee the response and coordinate efforts to prevent further transmission of the virus, the ministry said.

Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever is a widespread disease caused by a tick-borne virus of the Bunyaviridae family. It can be transmitted among humans through close contact with infected blood or bodily fluids, according to the World Health Organization. The virus is known to have a fatality rate ranging from 10 percent to 40 percent.

The ministry has urged the public to remain calm and vigilant and take necessary precautions to prevent tick bites, such as wearing protective clothing and using insect repellents. Enditem

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