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Nigeria Battling Alarming Diphtheria Outbreak: Urgent Measures Needed

Nigeria Battles Diphtheria Outbreak: Urgent Health Crisis Alert ๐Ÿšจ

Nigeria records surge in diphtheria infections


Nigeria Battling Alarming Diphtheria Outbreak: Urgent Measures Needed

Continues to Surge, Posing a Grave Concern

Nigeria Diphtheria Outbreak: A Looming

Nigeria, a nation grappling with various health challenges, is now facing a concerning surge in . According to the latest report by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) as of 3rd October, the country has recorded a staggering 13,204 suspected cases. Out of these, 8,406 cases have been confirmed, spread across 114 local government areas (LGAs) in 19 states, including the Federal Capital Territory.

The Director of NCDC, Ifedayo Adetifa, recently provided an update on the surveillance efforts during the inaugural press briefing of the diphtheria task force. This event shed light on the gravity of the situation and the urgent need for effective measures to contain the outbreak.

WHO Confirms Second Wave

Adding to the growing concerns, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has confirmed that Nigeria is currently experiencing a second wave of the diphtheria outbreak. As of 15th September, there have been 4,717 confirmed cases out of 8,353 suspected cases. The global health body has taken note of the increased affected population and a surge in the number of confirmed cases and related deaths.

The Demographic Impact

A closer examination of the diphtheria cases reveals some alarming trends. Of the 8,406 confirmed cases, a significant 73.7% were aged between one and 14 years old. This statistic highlights the vulnerability of children to this infectious disease.

State, situated in the North-west region, stands out as the epicenter of the outbreak, accounting for a staggering 86% of the total confirmed cases. State follows with 775 cases, while and have reported 232 and 118 cases, respectively. The rapid spread across these states underscores the need for swift and coordinated action.

Battling Vaccination Gaps

One of the most striking revelations from the is that the majority of confirmed cases are individuals who were either unvaccinated or partially vaccinated against diphtheria. Of the 8,406 confirmed cases, a staggering 64% were not vaccinated, and an additional 11% had an unknown vaccination status. Only 25% of the cases were fully vaccinated.

To combat this alarming trend, the national diphtheria task force has deployed National Rapid Response Teams (NRRT) to the affected states. These teams are providing on-site surveillance and response support, actively searching for cases in communities and healthcare facilities. However, the effectiveness of these efforts is hampered by security challenges that limit access to some locations in affected LGAs.

Managing Cases and Treatment

In states where inadequate bed spaces for patients have posed challenges, the NCDC is collaborating with local health authorities to establish emergency wards for the treatment of diphtheria patients. Notably, Katsina Federal Teaching Hospital has stepped up by waiving bed fees for patients admitted with diphtheria, easing the financial burden on affected families.

Furthermore, the NCDC has developed and disseminated Standard Operating Procedures for Diphtheria Antitoxin (DAT) use in health facilities and treatment centers. These guidelines are crucial in ensuring standardized and effective treatment.

Strengthening Laboratory Networks

In addition to on-ground efforts, the NCDC is intensifying its laboratory network's capacity to conduct preliminary and confirmatory testing at both sub-national and national levels. Currently, there are 14 laboratories in the Diphtheria Laboratory Network, with an optimization process underway to add five more laboratories at the subnational level.

This investment in laboratory infrastructure is essential for timely and accurate diagnosis, which is a key factor in controlling the spread of diphtheria.

Understanding Diphtheria

Diphtheria is a serious caused by Corynebacterium species. It primarily affects the nose, throat, and, in some cases, the skin. Those most at risk include children and adults who have not received any or only a single dose of the pentavalent vaccine. People living in crowded environments and areas with poor sanitation are also susceptible, as are healthcare workers exposed to suspected or confirmed cases.

The disease spreads easily through direct contact with infected individuals, as well as through droplets from coughing or sneezing and contact with contaminated clothing and objects. Symptoms include fever, runny nose, sore throat, cough, red eyes (conjunctivitis), and neck swelling. In severe cases, a thick grey or white patch may appear on the tonsils or at the back of the throat, causing difficulty in breathing.

A Call to Action

The surge in diphtheria cases in Nigeria is a cause for alarm, and it demands immediate attention from both health authorities and the public. Vaccination campaigns, education, and improved access to healthcare facilities are essential components of the response.

It's crucial for communities, healthcare workers, and policymakers to work together to combat this outbreak and prevent further loss of life. Let us remember that diphtheria is a preventable disease, and concerted efforts can bring it under control.

In this critical time, Nigeria NewsBurrow Network urges readers to join the conversation by sharing their thoughts and experiences in the comments section below. Together, we can raise awareness, foster discussion, and drive positive change in the fight against the diphtheria outbreak in Nigeria.

Nigeria Battling Alarming Diphtheria Outbreak: Urgent Measures Needed


As the diphtheria outbreak continues to affect Nigeria, it's crucial for us to take proactive steps to protect ourselves and our loved ones. In this challenging time, one of the most effective measures we can implement is ensuring access to adequate vaccination supplies. The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has reported that a significant number of confirmed diphtheria cases are among the unvaccinated or partially vaccinated individuals. To combat this alarming trend, we encourage you to explore a range of vaccination supplies that can help safeguard your health and that of your community.

With 64% of confirmed cases linked to individuals who haven't been vaccinated against diphtheria, it's evident that immunization plays a pivotal role in curbing the spread of this infectious disease. By taking this step, you not only protect yourself but also contribute to the collective effort to control the outbreak. In the following section, you'll find a selection of high-quality vaccination supplies to consider. We believe that these products can serve as essential tools in the fight against diphtheria, ensuring a safer and healthier environment for all. Take a moment to explore these options and make an informed choice that aligns with our shared goal of combating this outbreak.

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