Health officials with the prefecture of Mayotte, ARS Indian Ocean and the Directorate of Food, Agriculture and Forestry of Mayotte (DAAF) reminds the public of the importance of prevention measures to protect against Rift Valley fever (RVF) as it continues to circulate on the island.
During the past 2 weeks, 10 new animal foci and 4 new human cases have been reported, a total of 119 animal foci and 130 human cases, since the first cases occurred at the end of November 2018.
Animal foci are mainly located in the center and north-west of the island. Additional outbreaks have appeared since the end of March in the municipalities of DEMBENI, as well as on Petite Terre.
The number of reported human cases has remained stable since the beginning of April (on average, 4 to 5 reported cases per week).
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Since the beginning of the health alert, human cases have remained mainly in the center and north-west of the island.
Rift Valley Fever is mosquito-borne virus that is endemic in parts of Africa including South Africa. It primarily infects animals like sheep, cattle and goats and it can have an economic impact on a community due to the loss of livestock.
Humans get infected through contact with infected animal blood or organs. Butchering and slaughtering of animals is a primary cause of transmission to humans. Certain occupations are at a higher risk of getting Rift Valley Fever like farmers, herders and veterinarians.
It can also be transmitted to humans through mosquito bites and the bites of blood-sucking flies.
Most cases of Rift Valley Fever are mild and symptoms include fever, headaches and muscle pain. However, a small percentage of people can get serious disease which includes retinitis, encephalitis and a hemorrhagic fever. Fatalities happen in less than 1 percent of those infected.
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