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Cholera spread: Fear of a school epidemic escalates as students return

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Cholera spread: Fear of a school epidemic escalates as students return

By: Adisa Deborah

The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control and Prevention has issued a warning about a rise in cholera infections, with more than 1,141 suspected cases identified in 30 states. The Field Office, managed by Celine Lafoucrier, is calling for increased efforts to protect pupils over the midterm break and Sallah vacation. UNICEF and the University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital are partnering to address the issue.

 

Abdurrazzaq Alege, a consultant pediatrician at the Federal Teaching Hospital, warns that cholera could spread due to the rainy season, holidays, and poor sanitation. He proposes installing clean food, water, and hand-washing facilities in classrooms and bathrooms. The Association of Private Medical Practitioners of Nigeria (APMP) and Lagos State Health Commissioner, Prof Akin Abayomi, have emphasized the significance of preventive measures in schools to minimize the spread of the disease.

 

The Abeokuta South Local Government in Lagos State has recorded 350 suspected cholera cases, including 17 confirmed and 15 fatalities. Ajeromi Ifelodun and Ifako Ijaiye are among the people affected. WHO and international organizations are aiding the state, while local non-governmental organizations (NGOs) increase awareness and perform community-based surveillance. Public health campaigns are stepping up to avert a recurrence.

 

The Ogun State Commissioner for Health, Oluwatomi Coker, reported three cases of cholera in Lagos State and Abeokuta South Local Government. Kayode Akinmade, Special Adviser to Governor Dapo Abiodun, proposed efforts to prevent cholera epidemics in Ogun State, such as requiring toilets in homes, identifying rooms for conversion, and providing operational public toilets. Coker also recommended that residents drink safe water and wash their hands.

 

To avoid cholera epidemics, the Osun State Government activated fast response centers in 30 local government districts. State Commissioner Jola Akintola encourages rigorous adherence to regulations as well as the significance of using trustworthy water sources. The Ministry of Environment will take action against anyone who violates the law. Public awareness campaigns have also been launched via radio and television.

 

Nigeria’s Ministry of Education is prepared for a suspected incidence of cholera, even though no casualties are expected. They have issued a press release to raise public awareness through print and electronic media, activated their public health fast reaction center, and reproduced it in local governments. The Ministry of Education is also striving to prevent the spread of cholera in schools by interacting with stakeholders and visiting over 70 community border wards to educate communities about the problem.

 

To avoid diseases like cholera, the Sokoto State Government has built an incident management system as well as a monitoring team in schools and public areas. Sambo Danchadi, the state Commissioner for Information, guarantees that the administration is doing everything possible to prevent breakouts. Dr. Yarman Ortese, Benue State Commissioner for Health and Human Resources, announces an emergency operation to combat pollutants, although no cholera outbreaks have been reported.

 

The Rural Water and Sanitation Agency has organized a cholera prevention group, chaired by Habu Dahiru, Commissioner for Health. The committee is attempting to prevent cholera in 55 hotspots with inadequate water supplies, including boreholes, ponds, and tiny pits. Decontamination of water sources will occur every two weeks.

 

The Delta State government, for its part, claimed to have contained the state’s current cholera outbreak.

Dr Joseph Onojaeme, the state Commissioner for Health, stated that there is now no cholera in the state and that the two cases reported two weeks ago had been resolved.

 

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