ABUJA, March 12 (Xinhua) -- Nigeria on Thursday confirmed that the death toll from the Lassa fever outbreak in the country has reached 144.
Twelve more people including two health workers died within the past week, bringing the death toll to that figure from the 132 earlier confirmed, said the Nigeria Center for Disease Control (NCDC) in a statement reaching Xinhua in Abuja.
The NCDC said a total of 855 confirmed cases had been recorded so far, since the onset of the outbreak in January.
Lassa fever is reportedly transmitted when saliva, urine, and excreta of rats come into contact with humans. In some cases, it has similar symptoms as malaria.
At least 27 out of 36 states in Nigeria, including its economic hub Lagos, have been affected by the disease.
Recent epidemiological data show that Lassa fever usually occurs in the country during the dry season between January and April.