29 April 2016

Namibia: Yellow Fever Case Confirmed

Photo: New Era
The Republic of Namibia.(file photo)

Health minister Bernard Haufiku announced yesterday in parliament that one case of yellow fever has been confirmed.

He said this case was still based on preliminary results, and the ministry has sent samples to a laboratory in neighbouring South Africa for confirmation.

A local daily reported this week that a suspected case of yellow fever was reported at the Engela district hospital in the Ohangwena region, where a patient who showed symptoms was admitted.

Haufiku said the patient who had travelled to Lubango in Angola was immediately transferred to the Oshakati Hospital, and was discharged on Wednesday.

The minister cautioned those travelling to Angola to take precautions and get vaccinated. The first case of yellow fever was reported in Angola in December last year.

The World Health Organisation said the current outbreak is the worst in 30 years. The organisation also urged travellers to Angola to get vaccinated. Reports show that over 250 people have died, and that there have been around 1 975 suspected cases since December.

Angola's outbreak has already spread to other African countries, including the Democratic Republic of Congo, and at least 11 cases of yellow fever have been imported into China by people travelling from Angola.

The yellow fever virus is transmitted by mosquitoes. Symptoms include headache, fever, muscle pain, nausea, fatigue and vomiting. About half of the severely affected patients who are not treated die within two weeks.

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