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Namibia: Man dies of Congo fever

Namibia: Man dies of Congo fever
A health worker wears protective gear against the virus at a treatment   -  
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John Bompengo/Copyright 2018 The AP. All rights reserved.


A man died in Namibia of Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever, known as Congo fever, a viral disease that is transmitted by ticks, we learned on Wednesday from the Ministry of Health.

“A single case is enough to declare an eruption” of the disease and for sanitary measures to be put in place against transmission, according to international standards, Ben Nangombe, executive director at the ministry, told AFP.

The case was confirmed on Sunday after testing, the ministry said in a statement Tuesday. The man, who had been placed in isolation in a hospital in the capital Windhoek and who died last week, has been in contact with a total of 27 identified people, according to health authorities.

The infectious disease is a zoonosis, which means that it affects animals and can be transmitted to humans. Transmission of this hemorrhagic 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 Organization (WHO).

The mortality rate is 10 to 40%.

The last known cases in Namibia date back to 2020, according to the Ministry of Health. The death rate in the country on the last cases had reached 50%.

Contaminations generally affect people working in the livestock sector, slaughterhouse employees, or health personnel, according to the Ministry of Health.

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