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Karachi News
September 06,2018

Congo fever becomes a nightmare for officials as five new cases surface

M. Waqar Bhatti

Congo Crimean Hemorrhagic Fever (CCHF), tick-borne viral fever, has become a nightmare for health authorities in Karachi where five more persons have tested positive for the deadly disease and are being treated at various hospitals, health officials said on Tuesday.

The Sindh health department has asked the livestock authorities to spray the animals coming from Balochistan with insecticides to kill any ticks attached to their bodies.

The Congo fever is a lethal viral infection that is transmitted to humans from animals, especially cattle heads. Infected patients are kept in isolation wards to prevent other patients and doctors and paramedics from contracting the disease.

Health officials said two patients tested positive for CCHF at Dr Ziauddin Hospital, Karachi, one at Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Center (JPMC), and two patients tested positive at Aga Khan University Hospital (AKUH). One of the patients died.

Officials at JPMC said one more patient tested positive for Congo fever, raising the number of patients under treatment at the hospital to five. “Muhammad Zubair, a resident of Malir, has tested positive for CCHF, who has been kept at the isolation ward in the medical ICU at the hospital,” Executive Director JPMC Dr Seemin Jamali told The News on Tuesday.

She said that currently there were five CCHF patients being treated at the JPMC, including three Karachi residents, one of them a young woman, and two patients -- an elderly person and a boy -- were from Quetta, Balochistan.

Health authorities said that this year nine patients had died due to Congo fever at various Karachi hospitals -- six Karachiites, two from Balochistan and one from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Officials at Dr Ziauddin Hospital said two patients, including a woman, were diagnosed with the disease at their hospital and both of them were being treated at an isolation ward.


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