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Sunday, April 14, 2024

28 children hospitalized, four dead in Kano

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A fresh outbreak of diphtheria disease has reportedly killed four children in villages in the Mingibir Local Government Area of Kano State.

28 others were said to have been hospitalised, according to a statement issued on Thursday by the Information Officer of the local government, Tasiu Dadin-Duniya, Punch reports.

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According to the statement, the children contracted the disease in Kwarkiya, Kuru, Kunya, and Minjibir Villages in Minjibir Local Government Area of the state.

Kano State, according to data from the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), tops the diphtheria disease charts.

Kano, Yobe, Bauchi, Katsina, and Borno accounted for 98.9 per cent of the 16,518 confirmed cases recorded across 160 LGAs in 22 states from week 19, 2022, to week 11 of 2024, according to the latest NCDC data sent to PREMIUM TIMES.

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It added that the disease has killed 839 persons with a case fatality rate of 5.0 per cent.

Read also: WHO, others seek increased funding to end tuberculosis in Nigeria

Kano responds

The Interim Management Officer of the affected local government in Kano, Muhammad Kunya, has called on the authorities and stakeholders to immediately reach out to the local government to protect the health of the communities.

The statement said the district head of the local government has also urged traditional rulers and Islamic scholars in the communities to enlighten the community and to pray for relief.

The Public Relations Officer of the state’s Ministry of Health, Ibrahim Abdullahi, said the report had been forwarded to the State Director of Public Health and had yet to confirm or deny the outbreak.

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Diphtheria

Diphtheria is a serious bacterial infection caused by the bacterium corynebacterium species that affects the nose, throat, and sometimes, the skin of an individual.

According to NCDC, 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, in areas with poor sanitation, and healthcare workers who are exposed to suspected or confirmed cases of diphtheria.

NCDC also said the disease spreads easily among people through direct contact with infected people, droplets from coughing or sneezing, and contact with contaminated clothing and objects.

The symptoms of diphtheria include fever, runny nose, sore throat, cough, red eyes (conjunctivitis), and neck swelling. In severe cases, NCDC said a thick grey or white patch appears on the tonsils and, or at the back of the throat associated with difficulty in breathing.

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