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Thailand Medical News Team  Aug 11, 2023  6 months, 2 weeks, 3 days, 2 hours, 57 minutes ago

Outbreak News: Afghanistan Continues To Witness Rising Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic Fever Infections

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Outbreak News: Afghanistan Continues To Witness Rising Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic Fever Infections
Thailand Medical News Team  Aug 11, 2023  6 months, 2 weeks, 3 days, 2 hours, 57 minutes ago
Outbreak News: In a distressing update on the Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic Fever (CCHF) situation in Afghanistan this year, the toll continues to rise as health officials report 806 cumulative cases and 86 deaths through August 5. The fatality rate stands at 10.67%, underscoring the urgency of containing the outbreak and safeguarding the population.

The majority of CCHF-associated deaths have been reported from 14 provinces, with Kabul (50.0%) and Balkh (15.1%) contributing to two-thirds of the grim tally.
 Tragically, the disease has not spared even the younger population, as 805 cases (99.9%) are above the age of 5, with 245 (30.4%) being females.
Afghanistan has long grappled with endemic CCHF, with a staggering number of cases and deaths recorded between 2017 and 2022 according to past Outbreak News reports. During this period, there were 1,971 suspected cases and 207 fatalities, with the majority (97.5%) affecting individuals over the age of 5. Moreover, females accounted for 25.9% of the reported cases during this period.
The outbreak's epicenter has predominantly been Herat province, where cases of Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever have surged dramatically over the past three months. This alarming escalation has raised concerns about the swift spread of the disease and its dire consequences.
Health authorities are in a race against time to curb the outbreak and protect the population from further harm.
With each passing week, the death toll due to Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever continues to rise, painting a grim picture of the public health crisis. Mohammad Asif Kabir, Deputy of Public Health of Herat, acknowledges the tragic loss of numerous lives to the disease, emphasizing the urgency of the situation.
The scope of the outbreak has transcended Herat, as other provinces also report cases of Congo hemorrhagic fever. Takhar province, for instance, recorded three cases, one of which was fatal. Shockingly, in just a single week, over 90 individuals across Afghanistan have fallen ill with this hemorrhagic fever. This rapid surge has placed health authorities on high alert, intensifying their efforts to stem the tide of the outbreak.
Health officials in affected provinces are taking swift action to implement measures aimed at containing the spread of the disease. Takhar Provincial Hospital, under the leadership of director Hayatullah Emami, assures the public of their preparedness to manage the disease, noting improvements compared to previous outbreaks. Similarly, Najibullah Tawana, director of the health department of Balkh, highlights the readiness of hospitals in the region to combat the outbreak head-on.
Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever falls within the spectrum of viral hemorrhagic fevers, a group of diseases varying in severity. Marked by sudden onset symptoms including high fever, muscle and joint pain, bleeding, and shock, these fevers pose a significant threat to public health. Understanding the modes of transmission is paramount, as the disease can spread through direct contact with symptomatic patients, body fluids, or cadavers. Inadequate infection control in healthcare settings, consumption of infected animal products, contact with rodents, or bites from infected mosquitoes and ticks also contribute to the spread.
As Afghanistan grapples with the unfolding crisis, health authorities are rallying their resources to confront the dire challenges posed by the Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever outbreak. The need for swift and coordinated responses has never been greater, as lives hang in the balance and the population looks to their healthcare system for protection and support.
In conclusion, Afghanistan finds itself in the midst of an alarming Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic Fever outbreak that has claimed lives and raised significant concerns about public health. The situation's urgency demands immediate and coordinated efforts from health authorities and the broader community to curtail the disease's spread, protect vulnerable populations, and prevent further fatalities. As the outbreak's toll continues to rise, a multi-pronged approach encompassing preventive measures, medical interventions, and public awareness campaigns becomes crucial to mitigate the devastating consequences of this outbreak.
For the latest Outbreak News, keep on logging to Thailand Medical News.


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