Global Alert and Response (GAR)

Imported case of Lassa fever in Germany

25 July 2006

On 21 July 2006, German health authorities have reported to WHO an imported case of Lassa fever, confirmed by laboratory tests at the Bernhard-Nocht-Institute of Tropical Medicine, Hamburg, Germany.

The patient, resident in Sierra Leone, became ill with fever on 5 July 2006 and flew to Germany on 10 July 2006, where he arrived the following day.

He is currently being treated in isolation in Frankfurt and German health authorities have taken the appropriate measures to prevent further transmission of the virus.

Although the risk of transmission of Lassa virus to co-passengers is extremely low, an international contact tracing exercise, coordinated by the Robert Koch Institut, Berlin, Germany, is ongoing. The relevant flights are:

- 10 July 2006; SN Brussels Airlines; flight SN 207; from Freetown, Sierra Leone, via Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, to Brussels, Belgium;
- 11 July 2006; SN Brussels Airlines; flight SN 2607; from Brussels, Belgium to Frankfurt, Germany.

Additional information to facilitate contact tracing is available at: