The outbreak of Meningitis has been an issue in the country as over 400 persons have lost their lives and this has prompted the association of Medical Laboratory Scientists of Nigeria, has called on the Federal Government to pay more attention to production of local vaccines.
The organisation was reacting to the outbreak of disease, including Cerebrospinal Meningitis in the five Northern States in country.
The National President AMLSN, Toyosi Raheem, made the demand during a press conference on Friday in Abuja, to commemorate the 2017 World Biomedical Science Day with the theme: “‘Antibiotics resistance: biomedical laboratory scientists response to the global threat.”
While lamenting the collapse of the Local vaccines Production Centre in Yaba, Lagos State, he stressed the need for government to pay serious attention to emerging and re-emerging diseases.
He also called on government to lay more emphasis on the production of local vaccines.
Raheem said, “The AMLSN is calling on all to rise up to the current challenge of meningitis type C that is claiming lives in our country. Let us see it as a call to duty once again. It is time to improve on public health awareness so that people will know how to prevent the infection.
“It is also time to update our skills on laboratory diagnosis of all infectious agents so that none escapes our radar and cause havoc to innocent Nigerians. Let our focus be on research and development with emphasis on indigenous vaccine research and development.
“The Federal Government should face the production of local vaccines in the country, this will not only save our country huge foreign exchange but also provide homegrown solution to our peculiar health challenges.
“Nigeria was producing sufficient bacterial vaccines but politics and in-house disorder has led to the total collapse of the laboratory in Yaba which has become home to rats. This is not how to manage what we have neither is it how to commit to health. We cannot continue to be ridiculed by emerging and reemerging diseases.”