NAMIBIAN AUTHORITIES RELEASE 35 PLACED UNDER QUARANTINE FOR CONGO FEVER

KEETMANSHOOP, NAMIBIA-- Health officials in Namibia have Wednesday released the 35 people who were placed under quarantine in Keetmanshoop on suspicion that they may have been exposed to Crimean-Congo haemorrhagic fever.

The Kharas Region (Province) Director of Health, Dr Bartholomeus Muntenda, confirmed their release from the Keetmanshoop State Hospital on Thursday. "They were released as they did not show any sign of having contracted the disease after being observed for two weeks," he said.

Some of those who were under quarantine were relatives of the 37-year-old man who died on March 27 after he was diagnosed with the disease. The man was bitten by a tick while he was helping his neighbour to slaughter a cow.

Dr Muntenda said despite the clearance given, it does not mean the community should stop practising the precautions that are in place. "We still have to be careful as we do not know which ticks have the virus," he said.

Crimean�Congo hemorrhagic fever (CCHF) is a viral disease whose symptoms may include fever, muscle pains, headache, vomiting, diarrhoea, and bleeding into the skin. The CCHF virus is typically spread by tick bites or contact with livestock carrying the disease.

According to health officials, Congo Fever can be avoided by quarantining animals before they enter slaughterhouses or routinely treating animals with pesticides two weeks prior to slaughter; as well as by avoiding contact with an infected person and with the corpse of someone who died of the disease.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK