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Senegal reports one death from Congo fever, health ministry says

Senegal reports one death from Congo fever, health ministry says
Health workers assist a 48-year-old Covid-19 patient at the Fann ...   -  
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A person has died in Senegal of Crimean-Congo haemorrhagic fever, a viral disease transmitted by ticks, the health ministry told AFP on Tuesday.

A butcher on duty at the Dakar slaughterhouse was declared ill on April 21 and died on April 22, Dr. Boly Diop, coordinator of the fight against Congo fever at the health ministry, told AFP.

"It was a single case. We then carried out investigations in the family, professional and health environments (of the victim) because the disease is contagious. The contact cases were identified and we followed them up. All the samples came back negative," added Mr Diop.

This fatal case is the first recorded in Senegal this year. The country has had five cases of Congo fever in 2022, including one death, Diop said.

Congo disease is a zoonosis. Transmission to humans of this haemorrhagic fever occurs "either through tick bites or through contact with blood or tissues of infected animals, during or immediately after slaughter," according to the World Health Organisation (WHO).

The majority of cases are found among people working in the livestock sector, farmers, slaughterhouse employees and veterinarians, according to a fact sheet from the Senegalese Ministry of Health.

Between humans, transmission of the disease "can occur following direct contact with blood, secretions, organs or biological fluids of infected subjects", according to the WHO. The haemorrhagic fever virus causes death in 10 to 40% of cases.

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