3 more people including an 8-year-old die from leptospirosis with 567 cases recorded so far

3 more people including an 8-year-old die from leptospirosis with 567 cases recorded so far

By Semi Turaga
Thursday 03/03/2022
Navua Hospital [File Photo]

Three more people including an 8-year-old have died from leptospirosis with 567 confirmed cases in all four divisions.

The newly reported deaths from leptospirosis are a 63-year-old from Nadi, an 8-year-old from Navua and a 20-year-old from Taveuni.

There has been a total of 23 deaths from leptospirosis this year with 18 in the Western Division, 2 in the Central Division and 3 in the Northern Division.

According to the Health Ministry, in the Western Division, there have been 236 cases with 42% from Lautoka, 23% from Nadi, 17% from Ba, 9% from Tavua, 6% from Ra and 3% from Nadroga and Navosa.

In the Central Division, there have been 193 cases, with 42% from Suva, 22% from Rewa, 13% from Serua and Namosi, 9% from Tailevu, 8% from Nasinu and 6% from Naitasiri.

The Health Ministry adds in the Northern Division, there have been 122 cases, with 95% of cases from Macuata, 2% in Cakaudrove, and 1% in Taveuni

In the Eastern Division, there have been 16 cases from Levuka and Kadavu.

The Health Ministry confirms cases remain predominantly in the 10-39-year-old age group, with more in males than females and in people of the i-Taukei ethnicity. The leptospirosis bacteria is spread to humans through the urine of infected animals, such as cows, pigs, rats and dogs.

To reduce your individual risk, it is important to understand that exposure to animals, soil, mud, and floodwaters during work or recreational activities increases your risk of infection.

Important prevention measures include wearing full covered footwear at all times when going outdoors, avoiding swimming in flooded waters, using clean fresh water to wash up after exposure to muddy waters, and keeping all food and drinks covered and away from rats.

For workplaces, practice good personal hygiene at all times, cover cuts and wounds well, and use protective equipment, especially footwear when in flooded and/or muddy areas.

Please seek medical care if you have recently had contact with floodwaters, mud, or animals, and develop the following symptoms: fever, muscle pain, headache.

You may also have red eyes, loss of appetite, nausea/vomiting, dizziness, or feel weak.

Danger signs for severe leptospirosis include shortness of breath, coughing blood, chest pain, yellow eyes, signs of bleeding including unexplained bruising, decreased or increased urination, difficulty staying awake.

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