Leptospirosis outbreak in Kadavu after 23 cases and 1 death

Leptospirosis outbreak in Kadavu after 23 cases and 1 death

By Rashika Kumar
Saturday 10/06/2023

There is an outbreak of leptospirosis in Kadavu as the Health Ministry has recorded 23 cases and the death of a 33-year-old woman on the island so far this year.

The Health Ministry says there has been an increase in cases beyond expected in recent weeks, with 14 cases reported over the last 3 weeks, and 5 of these cases reported just this week.

They say 17 people with leptospirosis have been admitted at the Vunisea Hospital in Kadavu this year, with an escalation in admissions in recent weeks.

Four people with severe leptospirosis were medically evacuated to the CWM Hospital over the last 4 weeks.

The Ministry says there are likely significantly more people with leptospirosis in Kadavu that have not presented to health facilities, as the challenging geographical layout of the island means that only people with the most severe form of the disease are being brought to be treated.

They say their Eastern Divisional team are preparing surge support to increase the number of health personnel on the island to conduct direct community outreach which will include medical screenings, awareness, treatment, and medical evacuations if necessary.

The Ministry is advising the people of Kadavu, and everywhere else in Fiji to prevent leptospirosis infection by avoiding contact with waterways, mud or soil without wearing the appropriate protective equipment.

Wear shoes that cover your feet when walking outside, especially in muddy areas and please seek medical attention early if you develop symptoms of leptospirosis.

This disease is curable if it is detected and treated early.

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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