Contact tracing activities underway after doctor dies from Lassa Fever


  • Mary Corcoran
  • Univadis Medical News
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Contact tracing activities are being carried out in several countries after a doctor, who recently attended an international surgical training event, died as a result of Lassa fever. 

The healthcare professional was one of two Dutch doctors who had worked in a rural hospital in Sierra Leone, and developed the disease. Both of the individuals had an onset of symptoms on 11 November and were medically evacuated to the Netherlands, where one of them subsequently died. It is suspected they may have been infected during surgery they conducted together on two local patients on 4 November. A third confirmed case was reported in a nurse who was part of the same surgical team, while the disease is suspected in a fourth healthcare worker. 

According to the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control, the healthcare worker who died had attended an international surgical training event in Freetown, Sierra Leone while in the prodromal phase of the disease and was still afebrile (11-12 November 2019). 

It said it had been informed of contact tracing activities being carried out in several countries including the Netherlands, Germany, Denmark, the United Kingdom, Sierra Leone, Uganda and India.

More than 150 risk contacts have already been identified.