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HomeHealthDiphtheria: NCDC List States With New Outbreak , Alerts Health Workers

Diphtheria: NCDC List States With New Outbreak , Alerts Health Workers

The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (NCDC) has asked medical personnel to keep a high index of suspicion for diphtheria by being vigilant and on the lookout for symptoms.The NCDC has responded to reports of instances of diphtheria in the states of Lagos and Kano, according to Dr. Ifedayo Adetifa, the agency’s director general, who made the statement in a public health alert available to newsmen in Abuja.He stated that instances are currently being found in the states of Yobe and Osun, where the NCDC is actively monitoring the issue.According to information from the Kano State Ministry of Health, there have been 25 deaths as a result of the diphtheria outbreak, along with 58 suspected cases and six people who have been admitted.The NCDC states that diphtheria is a serious bacterial infection caused by the bacterium called Corynebacterium species that affects the nose, throat and sometimes, skin of an individual.The symptoms of diphtheria include; fever, runny nose; sore throat; cough; red eyes (conjunctivitis); and neck swelling.In severe cases, a thick grey or white patch appears on the tonsils and/or at the back of the throat associated with difficulty breathing.Adetifa said in addition to clinically suspected cases, there have been laboratory-confirmed cases, and the NCDC is working with state ministries of health and partners to enhance surveillance and response to the outbreak.He said people most at risk of contracting diphtheria are: Children and adults who have not received any or a single dose of the pentavalent vaccine (a diphtheria toxoid-containing vaccine); People who live in a crowded environment; People who live in areas with poor sanitation; and Healthcare workers and others who are exposed to suspected/confirmed cases of diphtheria.NCDC hinted that diphtheria spreads easily between people through; direct contact with infected people, droplets from coughing or sneezing, and contact with contaminated clothing and objects.It advised parents to ensure that their children are fully vaccinated against diphtheria with three doses of the pentavalent vaccine as recommended in the childhood immunisation schedule.However, individuals with signs and symptoms suggestive of diphtheria were also advised to isolate themselves and notify the local government area , state disease surveillance officer (DSNO) or the NCDC

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