The Uganda Ministry of Health (MOH) and Ministry Of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries (MAAIF) are reporting that there is an outbreak of Rift Valley Fever (RVF) in Kiboga and Mityana districts.
This follows laboratory confirmations by the Uganda Virus Research Institute (UVRI) from two samples collected from both districts.
In Kiboga district, the victim was a 26-year-old male forest ranger who died on Nov. 16 and in Mityana district, a a 69 year old male farmer and fisherman died on Nov. 23.
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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