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No fewer than 34 persons have died as a result of Lassa Fever in Ondo State since January 2022.

The situation is the same in Edo State where about 20 persons have so far lost their lives within the period.

Despite recording 34 deaths in the last 10 weeks as a result of Lassa fever, the Ondo State Government said the rate of infection and fatalities have started tumbling.

Ondo State has the highest number of cases in the country ahead of Edo State.

Figures from the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control(NCDC) situation report for week 8(February 21-27) showed that of the 90 confirmed cases nationwide, Ondo had a total of 26, and recording 3 deaths.

Edo followed with 24 cases confirmed with 3 deaths as well.

According to NCDC, the number of new confirmed cases decreased from 91 in week 7, 2022 to 90cases.

These were reported from Ondo, Edo, Bauchi, Gombe, Kogi, Ebonyi, Taraba, Enugu, Oyo, Benue, Plateau States and the FCT.

NCDC also puts the cumulative figures as of week1to week 8, 2022, at 98 deaths with a case fatality rate(CFR) of 18.1% which is lower than the CFR for the same period in 2021(22.8%).

Despite the lower case fatality rate this year, the actual figure for fatalities is higher than that of last year. While 31 persons died as of week 8 last year, 98 deaths were recorded this year.

Ondo State Week 10 report, has a total number of confirmed cases of 200, while 34 persons lost their lives to the infection.

But the Commissioner for Health in the state, Dr Banji Ajaka, says the state was recording high figures because it was doing more testing that other states.

 “If you follow it now, you will that this epic week that we are now, the whole thing has started going down,” he said.

“Ondo State was leading the chat because we were testing and we had capacity to test, unlike other states.

“If you don’t test, there is no other way you will know. For example if there are states that are not testing now, and even if they have Lassa fever all over the place, there is no way they will know that somebody has it or died of Lassa fever.”

 Dr Ajaka said the figures peaked in February, but had been a decline since the beginning of March, 2022.

He added that efforts had been heightened with regards to campaigns in order to get people adopt the highest levels of hygiene.

He also said that two centres were now available for the handling of Lassa fever cases in the state.

In Edo, Commissioner for Health Prof. Obehi Akoria, says a special committee headed by the Governor of the state, Godwin Obaseki, has been set up in response of the rising cases of infection in the state.

She said infections have been predominant in Etsako West and Esan West Local Government Areas.

Over 130 cases have been confirmed so far in the state.

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