Weekly Epidemiological Report

December 2019 Week 50


Dry Season and Infectious Diseases: 5 Tips To Prevent Lassa Fever

Posted: 30-12-2019 12:00:08 PM

The dry season has begun in Nigeria. One of the main characteristics of the dry season is the winds known as harmattan, which brings fine sand from the Sahara desert into Nigeria.

The dry season is known to be associated with an increase in the transmission of highly infectious disease such as Lassa fever (LF) and meningitis. During the dry season, rodents which are vectors for LF usually migrate towards human settlement as an alternative habitat.

The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) advises the public to practice the five tips below to protect their health and prevent the spread of infectious diseases:

1. Ensure proper sanitation by keeping house and environment clean

2. Practice hand hygiene by washing hands frequently with soap under running water

3. Ensure food is well cooked before consumption and protect food from contact with rodents

4. Keep rodents away by blocking holes around the house. Materials that can attract rats such as foodstuff, used sack, raw material etc. should be arranged properly and keep away from rodents.

5. As LF mimics other common illnesses such as malaria, typhoid fever and flu-like illnesses., if you experience sudden high grade fever not responding to recommended treatment, please visit or take all sick persons to a health care facility immediately

Apart from rodent-human transmission, human-human transmission is also common. Lassa fever is a treatable disease, especially if detected early. Complications and deaths from LF have been largely attributed to delay in seeking health care.

The National Lassa fever Technical Working Group coordinated by NCDC, which includes representatives of partner agencies, continues to monitor cases and support states in improving preparedness and response. We advise an increased focus on adequate sanitation and institution of good hygiene practices. Medical personnel are also enjoined to have high index of suspicion and ensure early reporting for improved response.

Summary of Incidents


1. Information for this disease was retrieved from the Technical Working Group and Situation Reports

2. Case Fatality Rate (CFR) for this disease is reported for confirmed cases only

3. Information for this disease was retrieved from IDSR 002 data

4. CFR for this disease is reported for total cases i.e. suspected + confirmed

5. Information for sentinel influenza was retrieved from the laboratory

Lassa Fever

Key points

• There were 79 suspected cases of Lassa Fever (LF) reported from 13 LGAs in seven states (Edo – 45, Ondo – 25, Ebonyi – 4, Plateau – 1, Enugu – 1, Oyo – 1 & Cross River - 2). There were four confirmed cases and one death was recorded in Ondo state.


To date:

• National Lassa Fever multi-sectoral Technical Working Group (TWG) continues to coordinate response activities and support states

• Engaged contact tracers in hot spot and high burden states

• Reviewed LF case management and surveillance tools, and SOPs


• Finalise advocacy packages for National and subnational policy/decision makers

• Finalise the Lassa fever five-year strategic plan

• Harmonise LF laboratory, case management and surveillance data with SORMAS

Cerebrospinal Meningitis (CSM)

Key points

There were 10 suspected cases of Cerebrospinal Meningitis (CSM) reported from five LGAs in three states (Ebonyi – 1, Kaduna – 8 & Zamfara – 1). None was laboratory confirmed and no death was recorded


To date:

• National CSM Technical Working Group (TWG) meets weekly to review reports from states and plan appropriately

• Enhanced surveillance in all states (with focus on high risk states)

• Developed 2019/2020 CSM preparedness and response plan


• Continue harmonisation of the national line list and SORMAS data

Yellow Fever

Key points

• There were 46 suspected cases of Yellow Fever (YF) reported from 32 LGAs in 14 states. There was one laboratory confirmed case and no death was recorded


To date:

• National multiagency YF EOC is coordinating response activities

• National Rapid Response Team (RRT) deployed to Bauchi, Benue and Katsina states

• International Coordinating Group (ICG) request for vaccines developed for Bauchi and Benue states with NPHCDA


• Follow up on outcome of ICG request


Key points

• There were five suspected cases of cholera reported from Abeokuta north LGA in Ogun state. There was no laboratory confirmed case and no death was recorded


To date

• National cholera multi-sectoral Technical Working Group (TWG) is monitoring all states and supporting already affected states


• Follow up with states with active outbreaks and monitor non-reporting states


Key points

• There were 265 suspected cases of measles reported from 117 LGAs in 26 states. None was laboratory confirmed and no death was recorded


To date

• National measles Technical Working Group (TWG) is closely monitoring surveillance data and response activities across the country


• Continue the review of measles surveillance data across the country

• Finalise measles surveillance guideline

• Review implementation of sentinel sites for Congenital Rubella Syndrome in Nigeria


Key points

• There were no suspected cases of Monkeypox reported this week


• National Monkeypox Technical Working Group (TWG) is monitoring activities in all states

• Off-site support to affected states


• Enhance surveillance for monkeypox in high burden states, working with the animal health colleagues.

• Follow up to ensure all contacts are included in the line-list and monitored for 21 days

Acute Flaccid Paralysis (AFP)

Key points

• There were 79 suspected cases of AFP reported from 73 LGAs in 27 states and FCT. None was laboratory confirmed and no death was recorded

National Influenza Sentinel Surveillance

Key points

There were 82 processed samples positive for influenza, with 68 for influenza A, 13 for influenza B and 1 for influenza A & B

Timeliness and Completeness of Reports

Timeliness and Completeness of Reports by State

Highlight of the week

  • Summary of Incidents
  • Lassa Fever
  • Cerebrospinal Meningitis (CSM)
  • Yellow Fever
  • Cholera
  • Measles
  • Monkeypox
  • Acute Flaccid Paralysis (AFP)
  • National Influenza Sentinel Surveillance
  • Timeliness and Completeness of Reports
  • Timeliness and Completeness of Reports by State

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