NEWS

NCDC: 15,060 Persons Infected With Diphtheria In Nigeria

The Director-General of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, Ifedayo Adetifa, reported on October 19, 2023, that the country had recorded approximately 15,060 suspected cases of diphtheria infections.

Of these, 9,478 cases were confirmed across 137 local government areas in 20 states, including the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja.

During a press briefing in Abuja on Thursday, he revealed that 71.5 percent of the confirmed cases occurred in individuals aged one to 14 years, with infants comprising less than one percent of the cases. Adetifa also presented data indicating that Kano had the highest number of cases, with 7,747, followed by Yobe with 841 cases.

He added, “Bauchi State recorded 369 infections, followed by Katsina – 275, Borno – 164, Jigawa – 24, Kaduna – 18, Lagos – eight, Zamfara – seven, FCT – seven, Gombe – five, Sokoto – four, Osun – three, and Niger State- two cases.”

The Director-General noted that Cross River, Enugu, Imo, Nasarawa, Kebbi, and Taraba states each reported a single case of diphtheria infection.

During the briefing, the Executive Director of the National Primary Health Care Development Agency, Faisal Shuaib, stated that a total of 1,692,762 children aged between six months and four years had received the Pentavalent vaccine, a crucial defense against this disease. Furthermore, he mentioned that 3,166,419 children aged four to 14 years had received TD vaccines, providing additional protection for children and teenagers against diphtheria.

He clarified that the first round of phase two of the outbreak response, using diphtheria vaccines, began on September 23 and was underway in seven states, covering 56 local government areas significantly affected by the ongoing outbreak.

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