No Congo Fever symptoms in suspected patients

27 Feb 2017 16:00pm
WINDHOEK, 27 FEB (NAMPA) – The nine people who had direct contact with a man infected with Crimean-Congo Haemorrhagic Fever (CCHF) have not shown any symptoms so far.
The five staff members of the Gobabis District Hospital who came into contact with the man, were put under quarantine last Thursday following the death of the 26-year-old man the previous day.
He was bitten by a tick on 18 February 2017 at a farm in the Kalahari Constituency of the Omaheke Region, where he was employed.
Four other people who had direct contact with the deceased at the farm were transferred to the Windhoek Central Hospital (WCH) Friday afternoon.
One of the four presented symptoms of jaundice.
Minister of Health and Social Services, Bernard Haufiku told a media conference on Monday general blood tests were done on the four people at the WCH. The results are expected to be released this week, while routine check-ups will be done twice daily.
The ministry has also sent a team of two doctors, four nurses from the Katutura Intermediate Hospital and two drivers for relief duty while the five staff members are under isolation.
The farm where the man was employed, has also been placed under quarantine and is being closely monitored.
Haufiku said the Congo Fever originated on resettlement farms, where some farmers failed to spray their livestock every six months to amongst others, prevent ticks.
He also explained that Congo Fever has an occurrence cycle of five to 10 years.
The first cases in Namibia were reported in 1986 – one case in Grootfontein; two in Windhoek; two in Gobabis; and one in Karasburg.
One more case was reported in 1998 and two in 2001. No one died.
These infections were due primarily to handling dead carcasses and not due to tick bites.
“If an animal dies, we urge farmers to take caution with the handling of the carcass,” Haufiku said.