Lassa Fever | One patient in Bedfordshire has died from a confirmed case of the Ebola-like virus Lassa fever, the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) said.
In a statement on Friday, the agency said the individual died as they confirmed the case of the acute viral illness, which is endemic in parts of West Africa.
It comes as the third case of the potentially fatal infectious disease to be confirmed in recent days after the discovery of two cases in the east of England on Wednesday.
All three cases are understood to be linked to recent travel to West Africa.
UKHSA said: “We are contacting the individuals who have had close contact with the cases prior to confirmation of their infection, to provide appropriate assessment, support and advice.
“The risk to the general public remains very low.”
A Bedfordshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust spokesperson said: “We confirm the sad death of a patient at our trust, who had confirmed Lassa fever.
“We send our deepest condolences to their family at this difficult time.
“We will continue to support the patient’s family and our staff and are working closely with colleagues from the UK Health Security Agency to undertake a robust contact tracing exercise.”
The cases are the first of the disease to be confirmed in the UK in more than a decade.
NHS East of England has now declared a “regional major incident”.
Do you want to send us your videos or pictures or even scoops? Contact us via email [email protected]