The federal government has said the ongoing outbreak diphtheria has affected 9,478 children across the 20 affected states, with 4,859,181 children vaccinated against in the response.
The executive director of the National Primary Healthcare Development Agency (NPHCDA), Dr Faisal Shuaib, disclosed this yesterday at a press briefing by the National Diphtheria Emergency Task Team, in Abuja.
He said, “The phase 2 Round 1 of our outbreak response using diphtheria vaccines commenced on the 23rd of September 2023 and has unfolded in seven states, encompassing 56 local government areas (LGAs) that are profoundly impacted by the ongoing Diphtheria outbreak. “As we stand today, this ongoing vaccination phase has made a tangible difference in protecting the lives of 4,859,181 children across these affected states.
“A total of 1,692,762 children, ranging from six months to four years of age, have been diligently administered the Pentavalent vaccine, a vital safeguard against this disease. In addition, an impressive 3,166,419 children aged 4 to 14 years have received the Td vaccines, further strengthening our safeguards from the disease among our children and teenagers.”
Shuaib, however, noted that three doses of these vaccines were required for complete protection, even as he expressed the federal government’s commitment to supplying the necessary vaccines to reach the target population and effectively reduce the burden of diphtheria in these areas.
Meanwhile, the director-general of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), Dr Ifedayo Adetifa, said 15,060 cases of diphtheria had been reported out of which 9,478 were confirmed cases from 137 LGAs in 20 states.
Ifedayo gave the breakdown by states as Kano – 7,747 (81.7%), Yobe – 841, Bauchi – 369, Katsina – 275, Borno – 164, Jigawa -24, Katsina – 18, Lagos – 8, Zamfara – 7, FCT – 7, Lagos – 6, Gombe – 5, Sokoto – 4, Osun – 3, Niger – 2, Cross River, Enugu, Imo, Nasarawa, Kebbi, Taraba – 1 each.