Lassa fever alert in Liberia

National authorities have alerted the World Health Organization regarding 38 suspected cases of Lassa fever. Of the 38 cases, 31 have been reported by the prefectures of Bong (includes 5 deaths) and Nimba (with 6 deaths). The remaining cases occurred sporadically in Gbarpolu, Lofa, Margibi, and Montserrado.

Visit our Health Library for more information on exposure to and the prevention of Lassa Fever.

Advice For Travellers

The risk for the general traveller is low.

This infection is transmitted to humans through contact with food or household items that are contaminated with rodent excreta or through direct contact with the bodily fluids of an infected person. Travellers should avoid contact with rats, especially their urine and faeces. Travellers should also practice careful personal hygiene by washing their hands frequently especially when caring for sick patients who might have this infection. Although most infections are mild, Lassa fever can be a severe viral haemorrhagic illness in 1 out of every 5 infected people.