Health

Lassa fever news – live: Patient dies of virus as NHS declares major incident in East of England

The UK has reported its first death in relation to Lassa fever after three cases were confirmed in the country this week, health officials have announced.

All three infections were discovered within the same family from the east of England and were linked to recent travel to West Africa.

The risk to public health from Lassa fever is very low, the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) has announced.

Unlike Covid-19, the virus is not transmitted via airborne infection, but through contact with infected bodily fluids.

Dr Michael Head, senior research fellow in Global Health at the University of Southampton, said: “Lassa fever is a serious infection, but is nothing like as infectious as COVID-19. Previous studies have estimated the R number of Lassa to be roughly between 1.0 and 1.6.

Due to testing and a drive for worker’s in hospitals dealing with Lassa fever cases to wear personal protective equipment (PPE), one hospital in the east of England has declared a major incident.

“Because of the impact this will have on staffing key services in our region we have declared a regional major incident. This allows the region’s healthcare systems to work together to keep services running safely,” NHS east of England said.

“Some hospital services will be affected, with a number of services either postponed or moved to a different location. Patients that are affected by this will be contacted directly.”



Xural.com

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