The Nigerian Federal Government (FG) has warned that about 171 local councils in 14 states are at high risk of further spread of a disease known as diphtheria.
A document released by the Federal Government said that affected areas are: all 144 local councils in Kano, Katsina, Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Yobe, Kaduna and Bauchi states.
Also, part of the list are 20 contiguous local councils in six neighbouring states (Gombe, Jigawa, Borno, Nasarawa, Plateau and Zamfara); and seven local councils in Lagos and Osun states.
Outbreak In Four States
This came as the Federal Ministry of Health collaborates with the National Primary Healthcare Development Agency (NPHCDA).
Also, Nigerian Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) and partners, is mobilising resources to respond effectively to an outbreak in four states.
Already, a comprehensive response plan has been activated to ensure early detection, containment of cases, and prevention of further transmission.
This is done through a multi-phased response strategy.
Olufunsho Adebiyi, the permanent secretary in the ministry disclosed this in a statement in Abuja, on Sunday.
He mentioned that available real-time surveillance data showed active diphtheria outbreaks in 25 local councils in Bauchi, Katsina, Yobe and Kaduna.
Adebiyi said that a partnership aimed at intensifying mass vaccination of identified populations at risk are being deployed in two phases.
Phase one, a five-day reactive catch-up campaign, is planned for the affected 25 local councils in four states from August 7, 2023, and will target children less than 14 years of age.
Children, six weeks to four years, would be administered the Pentavalent vaccine, while children above four to 14 years would be administered Tetanus-Diphtheria (Td) vaccine during the campaign.
He noted that 171 local councils in 14 states were being prioritised for full three rounds of catch-up campaigns using the Pentavalent vaccine (for children less than four years) and Td vaccine (for children between four and 14 years).
According to him, the 14 states for the phase two response are: Katsina, Kaduna, Kano, Yobe, FCT, Bauchi, Gombe, Jigawa, Borno, Nasarawa, Plateau, Zamfara, Lagos and Osun.
Adebiyi observed that the three rounds of the phase two response catch-up campaigns had been tentatively scheduled for August 21, 2023 (first round), September 18, 2023 (second round) and October 16, 2023 (third round).