Very contagious disease
Iraq’s Ministry of Health raised the health alert level after detecting 90 cases and 18 deaths caused by a hemorrhagic fever that has already spread to all provinces of the country after the first case appeared in November 2021. The Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever has become a scourge for Iraqi ranchers. The virus, which causes a disease with a mortality rate of 40%, spreads especially through cattle, to the point that even butchers run a high risk of contagion. The disease is affecting the population of the province of Dhi Qar, in southern Iraq, where 42 people have already infected, despite the tightening of controls imposed by the Iraqi government, a few weeks after the declaration of the epidemic.
“It is possible that the numbers will increase, because there are other suspicious cases”, warned the spokesman of the Ministry Saif al Badr, in a statement reported by the Iraqi News portal and the Iraqi TV al Ahad. Congo-Crimea fever (Congo-Crimea haemorrhagic fever, Cchf), explains the ISS on its website, is a viral hemorrhagic fever caused by a virus of the genus Nairovirus that is transmitted mostly through the bite of infected ticks. The disease was first described in 1944 among Crimean peasants and soldiers, but only in 1969 it was discovered that the virus was the same as that identified in a Congo child in 1956: this is the reason for the name of Congo-Crimean fever. The disease in humans is quite serious and has a high lethality, but its incidence is limited. Among animals, however, it can have a wider diffusion.
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