By NewsDesk  @bactiman63

In a follow-up on the Rift Valley fever (RVF) outbreak in Mayotte, health officials are reporting a sharp decline in human and animal cases in recent weeks.

Image/Mayotte government

The outbreak, which began last November, is now at a total of 124 animal foci (99 cattle and 25 small
ruminants) and 141 human cases, through July 5.

Two serious human infections have been reported.

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According to WHO, Rift Valley Fever (RVF) is caused by a virus transmitted by mosquitoes and blood feeding flies that usually affects animals (commonly cattle and sheep) but can also involve humans. In humans the disease ranges from a mild flu-like illness to severe hemorrhagic fever that can be lethal. When livestock are infected the disease can cause significant economic losses due to high mortality rate in young animals and waves of abortions in pregnant females.

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The majority of human infections result from direct or indirect contact with the blood or organs of infected animals. The virus can be transmitted to humans through the handling of animal tissue during slaughtering or butchering, assisting with animal births, conducting veterinary procedures, or from the disposal of carcasses or fetuses. Certain occupational groups such as herders, farmers, slaughterhouse workers and veterinarians are therefore at higher risk of infection.