By NewsDesk  @infectiousdiseasenews

The Turkish Ministry of Health reports 13 human fatalities due to the the tick-borne disease, Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic Fever (CCHF), according to a Daily Sabah report.

Image/ErikaWittlieb via pixabay

This is out of 243 human cases reported during the first five months of the year.

The Health Ministry has guidelines in place for health care staff tackling cases, while a monitoring system tracks patients and ensures proper isolation. The Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry also runs programs to eradicate the tick population in provinces where clusters of cases are reported. The government also conducts awareness campaigns in rural areas where cases are more common to inform citizens about the disease, how to protect themselves from CCHF and other measures they can take.

Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever is a widespread disease caused by a tick-borne virus (Nairovirus) of the Bunyaviridae family. The CCHF virus causes severe viral hemorrhagic fever outbreaks, with a case fatality rate of 10–40%.

Animals become infected by the bite of infected ticks and the virus remains in their bloodstream for about one week after infection, allowing the tick-animal-tick cycle to continue when another tick bites. Although a number of tick genera are capable of becoming infected with CCHF virus, ticks of the genus Hyalomma are the principal vector.

The CCHF virus is transmitted to people either by tick bites or through contact with infected animal blood or tissues during and immediately after slaughter. The majority of cases have occurred in people involved in the livestock industry, such as agricultural workers, slaughterhouse workers and veterinarians. Human-to-human transmission is possible.