In Afghanistan, HSP Partners at the Central and Nangarhar Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratories (NVDRL), have not only been assisting the country’s efforts to contain its COVID-19 outbreak but they are also conducting surveillance on another highly fatal zoonotic disease in five different districts. Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic Fever (CCHF) is a tick-borne disease that has some similar symptoms to COVID-19 in humans. It too has no vaccine.
CCHF can be transmitted to humans when one comes in contact with either an infected tick or with the blood of an infected animal, such as cattle, goats, or sheep. Given that this virus is so transmissible and deadly, NVDRL engaged with local farmers and veterinary professionals in order to test their livestock populations for the disease. The results showed that 34.6% of the animals that were tested, carried CCHF. Now NVDRL is working with local public health agencies in Nangarhar to prevent the further spread of disease.