The Kano State Case Manager for the diphtheria outbreak, Dr Salma Suwaid, has confirmed that at least 61 persons have died from the outbreak of diphtheria in the state.
Suwaid disclosed this on Monday at a webinar organised by the Nigerian Centrefor Disease Control (NCDC) with the theme ‘Diptheria outbreak in Nigeria: Vaccination Response’.
Suwaid said a total of 783 – 360 male and 423 female – patients have been admitted so far in Kano.
She added that the average hospital stay of the patients is four days.
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“Eighty-three percent of deaths occurred in patients with the onset of symptoms greater than three days and an average of 15 admission days,” she said.
“Sixty-eight percent of patients have been discharged, 1.66 percent absconded, and 12.2 percent died.”
Adejoke Oladele, the representative of the director, disease control and immunisation, National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA), said the agency is working closely with the NCDC and partners to ensure a rapid increase in diphtheria vaccination coverage
“Apart from clinical and immunisation interventions, risk communication engagement activities are also carried out in affected communities. We are leveraging on structures implemented for COVID to ensure effective response,” she said.
Diphtheria is a bacterial infection caused by the corynebacterium species that affect the nose, throat, and sometimes, skin of an individual.
Some symptoms of diphtheria include fever, runny nose, sore throat, cough, red eyes, neck swelling, and difficulty in breathing.