Conference abstract

Preparedness for infection prevention and control during a Lassa fever outbreak in Ogun State, Nigeria 2017

Pan African Medical Journal - Conference Proceedings. 2018:8(8).21 Dec 2018.
doi: 10.11604/pamj-cp.2018.8.8.590

Contact the corresponding author
Keywords: Lassa fever, emergency preparedness, knowledge, infection control
Opening ceremony

Preparedness for infection prevention and control during a Lassa fever outbreak in Ogun State, Nigeria 2017

Oluwadamilola Olawunmi Abiodun-Adewusi1,&, Bisola Adebayo1, William Nwachukwu2, Hakeem Yusuff1, Ime Okon1, Salimat Sanni1, Ibidolapo Ijarotimi1, Qudus Yusuff3, Oluyomi Bamiselu1,3, Mahmood Dalhat1, Saheed Gidado2, Adebola Olayinka1

1Nigeria Field Epidemiology and Laboratory Training Program, Abuja, Nigeria, 2African Field Epidemiology Network (AFENET), Nigeria, 3Department of Public Health, Ogun State Ministry of Health, Nigeria

&Corresponding author
Oluwadamilola Olawunmi Abiodun-Adewusi, Nigeria Field Epidemiology and Laboratory Training Program, Asokoro, Abuja, Nigeria


Introduction: hospital-acquired infection (HAI) of Lassa fever (LF) during outbreaks often occurs with fatal consequences on healthcare workers (HCWs). In December 2016, Ogun State in southwestern Nigeria experienced LF outbreak in a tertiary health facility with five fatalities including two healthcare workers. We assessed the infrastructural and personnel preparedness (HFIP) of a major tertiary health facility during the outbreak.

Methods: a total sampling of all HCWs was done; we administered semi-structured questionnaires to assess their knowledge and practice of infection prevention and control (IPC). Knowledge and practice questions were scored and classified as either good or poor using 70% as cut off. A standardized checklist was used to evaluate the infrastructural preparedness. Odds ratios and logistic regression were computed. The significance level was set at 5%.

Results: a total of 13 suspected, 3 probable and 2 confirmed LF cases, with 5 deaths (CFR = 100%) were recorded. Good knowledge of IPC was found among 80 (78%) HCW; however only 45 (44%) reported good IPC practices. Of the 101 HCWs interviewed, 59 (58%) had had training on IPC. Good knowledge was found to be a significant determinant of good practice [AOR = 11.1, 95% CI = 3.3 - 50.0]. There was no significant association between having had IPC training and adoption of good practices (OR = 1.9, 95% CI = 0.8 - 4.2). There were no isolation wards, personal protective equipment (PPEs), IPC guidelines or running water observed at the health facility.

Conclusion: lack of IPC infrastructure and poor knowledge on IPC were likely contributors to spread of this outbreak. We sensitized all heads of department and other health facility staff, expanded the health facility infection control committee, established a Lassa fever isolation ward and built the capacity of healthcare workers on IPC.