Dolapo Fasawe, the mandate secretary, FCT Health Services and Environment, says two Lassa fever cases have been confirmed in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) out of four suspected cases.
Fasawe disclosed this at a news conference on the latest outbreak of the disease in Abuja.
Lassa fever is one of the viral hemorrhagic diseases and is caused by the Lassa virus.
As reported in other countries like Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia, Nigeria is fast becoming endemic with hot spot states including Edo, Ondo and Delta States.
According to Fasawe, annually, the FCT experiences sporadic infections between November and April so the city is in the middle of an outbreak.
She also said that the FCT has inaugurated the Emergency Operations Center to achieve a coordinated sub-national response and interrupt the transmission as soon as possible.
Giving a national update on the disease, she said that as of Monday, Nigeria had recorded cumulatively 486 suspected cases, confirmed 134 cases with 21 deaths giving a case fatality rate of 15.7 percent.
She, however, added that though the FCT has recorded four suspected cases and confirmed two, adding that there has been no related death from the disease.
The mandate secretary said that the first case was of a 14-month-old female.
Narrating how the two confirmed cases came about, she said that on Jan. 15, the FCT Public Health Department received an alert of Lassa fever from a clinician in Bwari General Hospital.
“A Rapid Response Team was mobilised to investigate the cases and it was revealed that the two children were high risk contacts of their mother.
“Samples were collected and sent to the National Reference Lab for confirmation.
“The deceased was a confirmed case, diagnosed at the Tafawa Balewa Teaching Hospital, Bauchi.
“Following her demise, the father traveled on January 9, to Bauchi to bring back the children who had accompanied their mother to Bauchi and returned to the FCT on January 12.”
She added that the father later presented the children to Bwari General Hospital and the facility notified the Public Health Department and response commenced.
Fasawe said that the case was investigated due to a high index of suspicion and daily monitored for symptoms.
“The result came back positive for the 14-month-old and negative for the 13-year-old.
“The 14-month-old is currently on treatment and the 13-year-old is currently on prophylaxis (prevention),” she said.
On second case, she said involved a 15-year-old female who was confirmed on January 17 at the Abuja University Teaching Hospital.