National Services Scotland logo

Fit for Travel Logo

Information on how to stay safe and healthy abroad. About us.

Lassa Fever in Nigeria (Update 4)

13 Mar 2018

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO)  the lassa fever outbreak in Nigeria is continuing.

In the week ending 4 March 2018, 35 new confirmed cases of lassa fever were recorded  in 5 Nigerian states: Edo (19), Ebonyi (9), Ondo (5), Bauchi (1), and Plateau (1), with 7 deaths in Ebonyi (3), Edo (2), and Ondo (2) states.

 From 1 January to 4 March 2018, 1 121 suspected cases have been reported. Of these, 353 were confirmed positive, 8 are probable cases, 723 are negative (non-cases) and 37 are still under investigation. 86 confirmed and probable cases have died since the beginning of 2018.

Eighteen states are currently affected: Anambra, Bauchi, Benue, Delta, Ebonyi, Edo, Ekiti, Gombe, Imo, Kogi, Lagos, Nasarawa, Ondo, Osun, Plateau, Rivers, Taraba, and the Federal Capital Territory. Most confirmed cases are from Edo, Ondo  and Ebonyi states.

Advice for Travellers

Lassa fever is a low risk for most travellers unless living in poor sanitary conditions with overcrowding in rural areas where the host is usually found. Lassa fever is a viral disease transmitted via the faeces of infected rats. Healthcare workers are at risk if good infection control and barrier nursing methods are not maintained.

Travellers returning from affected areas who develop symptoms of fever, malaise, headache, sore throat, muscle pain, chest pain, nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, and abdominal pain should seek medical advice.