32 Dead In Cameroon Cholera Outbreak

A map of Cameroon, a Central African country of varied terrain and wildlife

 

Thirty-two people have died in an outbreak of cholera in the central-western African state of Cameroon, the authorities said Wednesday.

The water-borne disease was first detected in the Southwest and Centre regions in late October and then spread to three other regions.

As of January 1, there were 32 deaths out of 1,102 recorded cases, Health Minister Manaouda Malachie said in a statement.

READ ALSO: Nigeria Records More Lassa Fever Deaths As Toll Rises To 40

Outbreaks of cholera, an acute form of diarrhoea that is treatable with antibiotics and hydration, occur periodically in Cameroon. The country’s last epidemic was between January and August 2020, when 66 people died.

Cholera is caused by a germ that is typically transmitted by poor sanitation. People become infected when they swallow food or water carrying the bug.

The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates an annual global tally of between 1.3 and four million cases, leading to between 21,000 and 143,000 deaths.

AFP

Cholera Has Killed Twice As Many People As COVID-19 In 2021 – NCDC Data

 

The number of people who died of cholera since the beginning of the year 2021 is twice as many as those killed by COVID-19, data from the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has revealed.

While the death toll from cholera has already exceeded 3,600 just about a month to the end of the year, the figure of those who died of COVID-19 complications since the outbreak of the pandemic in the country has yet to cross the 3,000 mark.

Cholera, an acute diarrheal illness caused by infection of the intestine, is contracted when patients swallow food or water contaminated with cholera bacteria.

Although the infection is often mild or without symptoms, it can be severe and life-threatening sometimes.

NCDC Director-General, Dr Ifedayo Adetifa, who was a guest on Channels Television Sunrise Daily on Wednesday, confirmed the cholera toll.

“Sadly, cholera has actually killed more people than COVID so far,” he said. “We have had I think a little over 3,600 deaths from cholera for the period of the year under review – the beginning of the year (2021) to date.”

 

More Than Double

Nigeria reported its first case of COVID-19 in late February last year and since then till the end of 2020, authorities said a total of 1,289 people lost the fight to the disease.

As of November 30 (Tuesday), the number of those who have died stood at 2,977 – suggesting that 1,688 more people died of COVID-19 in 2021.

The NCDC confirmed a total of 1,289 as of December 31, 2020.

 

The death toll from cholera in the last 11 months – as revealed by Adetifa, when compared with the figure of those killed by COVID-19, shows a difference of 1,912 which indicates that the former has killed more than twice as many people as the latter.

With the emergence of a new strain of COVID-19 known as Omicron (B.1.1.529 SARS-CoV-2 lineage), there are fears that Nigeria is focusing more on the pandemic than other diseases like cholera that have claimed more lives.

In his reaction, the NCDC chief explained that the agency has been tackling the diseases headlong and would not rest on its oars.

“I will like to reassure the public that while all of the public attention is on COVID, the NCDC is joggling several balls in terms of the other priority diseases of public health importance and we are responding to all of them,” said Adetifa. “So, the talk is about COVID, and nobody knows that we have teams out in about five, six states now helping with Cholera response.

“We’ve had rapid response teams in all of the states that have had cholera outbreaks. We have incident managers for Lassa fever that respond to cases that are reported, we are currently preparing for the meningitis season – the refresher training, the sensitisation.

“We would like all of these areas to receive equal or even more attention, but we have no choice but to focus on all of the diseases that are likely to have public health impact on the country according to the mandate that we have been given.”

No Confirmed Case Of Cholera In Ebonyi – Govt

Dr Daniel Umazuruike says there is no outbreak of cholera in the state as reported.

 

The Ebonyi State government says there is no confirmed case or outbreak of cholera in any part of the state.

Reacting to the report of a suspected outbreak of the disease in Ikwo Local Government Area (LGA) of the state, Dr Daniel Umazuruike stated that the claim was far from the truth.

Dr Umazuruike, who is the Commissioner for Health in Ebonyi, condemned the report in a statement on Friday in Abakaliki, the state capital.

Speaking about the situation in the affected LGA, he explained that investigations revealed that only four persons were affected and during a visit to their communities, those examined had no sign of cholera.

READ ALSO: Residents Of Sangana Community, Bayelsa Protest Gas Leakage, Water Pollution

The commissioner stressed that nobody died of cholera disease in the area, or any part of the state as reported, insisting that there was no confirmed case in Ebonyi.

He, however, assured the people in the area that the government has put adequate measures in place to avert the spread of any kind of disease in Ikwo LGA and the state at large.

Chairman of Ikwo, Steve Orogwu, during an interview with Channels Television, gave an account similar to that of the commissioner.

According to him, the report suggesting that a total of 65 people lost their lives to cholera across some communities in the area is unfounded.

Recently, reports emerged that some locals died following the outbreak of a disease suspected to be cholera in some of the communities in Ikwo.

Jigawa Cholera Outbreak: Over 500 Persons Dead In Four Months

A screenshot from a video showing patients and relatives at the entrance of the General Hospital, Birnin Kudu, Jigawa State.

 

Over 500 people have been confirmed dead within four months, following the outbreak of Cholera in Jigawa State, Northwest Nigeria.

Despite this, authorities say the state has continued to record a spike in the number of cases with over 20,000 cases confirmed so far.

Twenty-two of the 27 local government areas in Jigawa are said to be battling cases of cholera.

The state capital Dutse, as well as Birninkudu and Hadejia, are the worst hit by the outbreak.

The Executive Secretary of the Primary Health Care Agency in the state, Kabir Ibrahim, assured residents that the government was already making efforts to curb the disturbing number of infections.

READ ALSO: Obiano Signs Anti-Open Grazing Bill Into Law, Orders Immediate Enforcement

He gave the assurance on Friday while addressing journalists in Dutse, saying the state has rolled out vaccines for 720 people in three of the most affected local councils.

“We have received over 1.4 million doses (of vaccine) from the Federal Government through the World Health Organisation (WHO),” said Ibrahim. “Everyone from the age of one to adulthood are qualified to take this vaccine.

“For now, we are targeting the three local governments that are worst hit. Each recipient is entitled to two doses separated by four weeks.

“We are targeting 720 persons for the first dose and another 720 persons for the second dose which will be separated by four weeks.”

He urged residents to cooperate with the government’s effort in curtailing the disease and to maintain proper hygiene.

According to the World Health Organisation, researchers have estimated that each year, there are 1.3 to four million cases of cholera and 21,000 to 143,000 deaths are recorded.

WHO also said most of those infected had no or mild symptoms and can be successfully treated with oral rehydration solution.

The provision of safe water and sanitation is critical to prevent and control the transmission of cholera and other waterborne diseases, experts say.

Ekiti Govt Reports Five Suspected Cases Of Cholera

A map of Ekiti, a state in South-West Nigeria

 

The Ekiti State Government has raised an alarm to keep residents on red alert after five suspected cases of cholera surfaced in the Moba Local Government Area of the state.

The cases were detected by community informants who reported the same to local government health authorities.

The Commissioner for Health and Human Services in the State, Dr Oyebanji Filani, highlighted the possibility of an outbreak of the disease in some other local governments.

“Given the risk of this outbreak escalating rapidly across the state, the Ministry of Health has commenced active case finding across all LGAs,” he said via a statement issued on Friday.

“State surveillance teams have been deployed to support the outbreak response at the LGA level. These teams are actively searching for and investigating suspected cases in health facilities, informal treatment centers, and within communities.”

Filani explained that the ministry has also intensified action to ensure a coordinated and effective response to a possible outbreak, through the provision of medical and laboratory supplies for case detection and management, rapid scale-up of risk communications, and Water Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) activities.

He advised residents to be on guard, visit the nearest health facilities at the slightest symptoms, and report suspected cases to appropriate authorities.

“Considering the link between cholera, water sanitation and hygiene, a multi-sectoral team comprising of the state Ministries of Environment and Public Utilities has been set up with a meeting held among the ministries and commissioners on the 23rd of September 2021.

“This multi-sectoral team will support LGAs to ensure a coordinated and effective response to the possible outbreak. It is very important to visit a health facility if symptoms of cholera such as watery diarrhea and vomiting are observed,” the commissioner added.

“Cholera is a preventable and treatable epidemic-prone disease that is transmitted by eating or drinking contaminated food or water. The number of cholera cases tends to increase during the rainy season and the risk of death from cholera is very high when treatment is delayed.”

He asked members of the public to be aware of the risk of the disease and adhere to prescribed preventive measures.

Death Toll In Niger Republic Cholera Outbreak Rises To 104

(PHOTO FOR ILLUSTRATIVE PURPOSES ONLY) A nurse takes care of a cholera patient during a visit of Zimbabwe Minister of Health, at the cholera treatment centre of the Beatrice Infectious Diseases Hospital, in Harare, on September 11, 2018. 
Jekesai NJIKIZANA / AFP

 

 

 

An epidemic of cholera that has struck six regions in southern Niger has claimed 104 lives, the health ministry said on Friday.

It reported that 2,874 cases of the water-borne disease had been recorded in the capital Niamey and five other regions — Maradi, Zinder, Dosso, Tahoua and Tillaberi.

The toll as of August 19 stood at 35 fatalities out of 845 cases.

But the number of dead hit 104 on September 1, with a “fatality rate of four percent”, the health ministry said in a statement Friday.

Most infections are among people aged between 15 and 37, the ministry said.

The authorities are working with Doctors Without Borders (MSF), the UN and EU on a prevention campaign, including disinfection of village wells and the distribution of water purification tablets.

Cholera is spread by eating or drinking food or water contaminated by human faeces.

The disease is treated with rehydration and antibiotics and prevented with better hygiene and sanitation.

Niger’s last epidemic of cholera was in 2018, when 78 people died out of a caseload of 3,824 patients, according to the UN’s World Health Organization (WHO).

The latest outbreak coincides with severe flooding, which increases exposure to cholera bacteria.

Borno Declares Outbreak Of Cholera After Death of 43 Persons

 

The Borno state government on Tuesday declared an outbreak of Cholera in the state.

The declaration followed the death of 43 persons who suffered from the disease across seven local governments of the state.

Juliana Bitrus, the Borno State Commissioner for Health, said 559 suspected cases have so far been recorded but only 57 out of that number were hospitalized.

READ ALSO: Suspected Cholera Outbreak Leaves Seven Dead In Taraba

According to her, the outbreak was detected in seven local governments, including Gwoza, Kaga, Hawul, Magumeri, Damboa, Maiduguri Metropolitan Council and Jere.

Gwoza has the highest prevalence with 72 suspected cases, 18 deaths and 35 persons currently on admission.

Out of the seven local governments, Maiduguri has the lowest suspected cases and recorded no death.

The Commissioner noted that isolation wards have since been established in secondary health centers for the management of the disease.

Cholera spreads through contaminated food and water, with symptoms such as diarrhoea and dehydration.

Suspected Cholera Outbreak Leaves Seven Dead In Taraba

Map of Taraba
A map of Taraba, a state in Nigeria’s North-East region.

 

No fewer than seven persons died and many others hospitalized following a suspected outbreak of cholera in the Tella community of Gassol Local Government Area of Taraba State.

The Taraba State Commissioner for Health, Dr Innocent Vakkai confirmed the incident to Channels Television via a telephone interview on Monday.

He said a team of medical experts from the state’s Ministry of Health have been sent to the community to investigate the reported cases and give feedback.

While corroborating the report, the Chairman of Gassol Local Government Area, Musa Chul revealed that 25 persons are on admission at the Tella maternity clinic.

READ ALSO: Police Confirm Five Killed, 50 Abducted In Zamfara Village Attack

“I received a report from Tella community last Saturday evening that three persons have died from vomiting and constant stooling, which prompted me to detail the local government health team to the village to find out,” he said.

“Before the arrival of the team on Sunday, four more persons were also said to have lost their lives.

He narrated that the worst hit community was Unguwan Kabawa, a suburb of Tella community where the suspected cases started.

The council chairman advised residents to always stick to proper hygiene practices to prevent such ailment and possible death.

Katsina Cholera Outbreak Death Toll Rises To 75

Katsina State is in northwest Nigeria.

 

One hundred and thirty four additional cases of cholera Outbreak have been confirmed with fifteen deaths across 25 Local Government Areas in Katsina State.

This brings the total to 1,534 confirmed cases and 75 deaths.

The State Commissioner of Health, Engineer Yakubu Danja stated this on Tuesday in a press briefing on the outbreak of gastroenteritis recorded in some communities across 25 LGAs in the state that turned out to be the devastating Cholera Outbreak.

Danja confirmed that the state received the first report of suspected diarrhea and vomiting from the 5th May 2021 in Funtua Local Government Area, adding that as of August 8th 2021, a total of 1,534 cases including 75 deaths have been reported from 25 LGAs

Of the reported cases, he said 67% are aged 15 years and above while 3 cases were reported for under 1, stating that of the reported cases, 53% are males.

He explained that a total of 140 samples have been collected so far with 43 RDT positive, 2 culture positive where Funtua LGA had the highest number of cases with 384, followed by Sabuwa with 232, Kafur 215, Charanchi 135, Kankara 71 and Jibia with 69 cases.

In terms of mortality, he said Funtua LGA also leads with 18, followed by Charanchi LGA 14, Jibia LGA 11, Kankara LGA 5 as well as Sabuwa and Rimi having four each.

READ ALSO: NCDC Calls For Action As Cholera Kills 816 In 22 States, FCT

Although, insecurity remains one of the major factor hindering access to some areas for active case search, a lot of response activities have been taking place since the emergence of the outbreak where medical supply kits and other consumables have been distributed to the affected LGAs, according to Danja.

He, therefore, called on the general public to take deliberate effort to improve on their personal and environmental hygiene, regular hand washing with soap and water, boiling of water before drinking, proper cooking and storage of food, thorough washing of vegetables and fruits before eating, washing hands after using the toilet and proper disposal of feces and refuse.

 

NCDC Calls For Action As Cholera Kills 816 In 22 States, FCT

Health workers attend to patients at a makeshift clinic amid the outbreak of Cholera. (File photo)

 

 

The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has called on state governments and citizens to take more proactive steps to combat the outbreak of cholera across states in Nigeria.

The agency made the appeal in a report released on Monday, where it stated that there have been 31,425 suspected cases of cholera and 816 deaths reported from 22 states and the FCT, between January 1 and August 1, 2021.

The affected states are Benue, Delta, Zamfara, Gombe, Bayelsa, Kogi, Sokoto, Bauchi, Kano, Kaduna, Plateau, Kebbi, Cross River, Niger, Nasarawa, Jigawa, Yobe, Kwara, Enugu, Adamawa, Katsina, Borno and the FCT.

According to the NCDC, the recent outbreak has been exacerbated by poor access to clean water, open defecation, poor sanitation, and hygiene.

Although the NCDC activated the National Cholera Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) on June 22 and has deployed rapid response teams to support the most affected states, it warned that those actions won’t be enough.

“None of these medical interventions will solve the underlying issues leading to cholera outbreaks,” it warned.

“Cholera is a waterborne disease, and the risk of transmission is higher when there is poor sanitation and disruption of clean water supply.”

Specifically, practices such as the wrong disposal of refuse and practices such as open defecation endanger the safety of water used for drinking and personal use.

“These lead to the spread of water-borne diseases such as cholera. Without proper water, sanitation, and hygiene (WaSH), Nigeria remains at risk of cholera cases and deaths,” the NCDC added.

To address the underlying issues in the long term, there is a need for access to safe drinking water, maintenance of proper sanitation and hygiene.

“We continue to advocate for State Governments to prioritise action for solutions that ensure access to and use of safe water, basic sanitation and good hygiene practices in communities,” it added.

Also, the agency urged Nigerians to “keep their environments clean, only drink or use water that is boiled and stored safely, ensure food is cooked and stored in a clean and safe environment, avoid open defecation and wash their hands regularly with soap and running water”.

The NCDC says the long-term solution for cholera control lies in access to safe drinking water, maintenance of proper sanitation and hygiene.

 

Apart from calling for stronger water, sanitation, and hygiene (WaSH), the NCDC is also ramping up efforts to stop the outbreak through the EOC, which is hosted at the NCDC includes representation from the Federal Ministries of Environment and Water Resources, National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA), World Health Organization (WHO) and partners.

So far, it has deployed rapid response teams to Benue, Kano, Kaduna, Zamfara, Bauchi, and Plateau State, which are the most affected states.

Additionally, it has, along with its partners, provided states with commodities for case management and laboratory diagnosis, materials for risk communications, response guidelines among other support.

From July 24 to 28, a reactive oral cholera vaccine (OCV) campaign led by NPHCDA was conducted in Bauchi LGA.

The Cholera outbreak in Nigeria has worsened in recent months with more states reporting deaths, adding pressure to an already stretched health sector that has battled the COVID-19 pandemic and is currently weighed down by the strike by resident doctors which is now in its second week.

On Saturday, the Katsina State Government confirmed that it had recorded over 60 Cholera deaths.

“Presently, we have over 1,400 confirmed cases of cholera with over 60 recorded deads,” the Katsina State Commissioner for Health, Yakubu Danja, said during the 2021 Annual General Meeting of the State chapter of Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) held in the state capital.

The NCDC in its report advised Nigerians to visit a health facility immediately if they have sudden onset of profuse watery diarrhoea, nausea, vomiting, and weakness.

“Cholera is preventable and treatable; however, it can be deadly when people who are infected do not access care immediately,” it warned.

Cholera: Govt Shuts Market In Abeokuta

A map of Ogun, a state in south-west Nigeria.

 

The Ogun State government has shut a market in Abeokuta, the capital city, for operating below public hygiene standards.

The market, Iberekodo daily market was shut by the government to prevent the outbreak of communicable diseases, especially cholera

This was announced on Wednesday by the Special Adviser to the Governor on Environment and Chief Executive Officer of the Ogun State Waste Management Authority, Mr Ola Oresanya.

He said the government took the decision to shut down the market due to its dirty environment and heaps of waste dumps within the market.

READ ALSO: Police Rescue Kidnap Victim In Benue, Reunites Him With His Family

Oresanya explained that the dirty environment would affect the safety of foodstuffs and other commodities sold in the market.

According to him, since the traders have failed to heed the government’s earlier warnings to comply with public hygiene protocols as it relates to market sanitations in the overriding public interest, the government had no other choice but to close the market.

“The state government will not fold its hands and watch few traders compromise the health of millions of our people by trading in a dirty environment,” he added.

The market would remain shut until the traders clean the market environment of all dirt and clear the illegal dumpsite within the market.

He however warned other traders operating markets across the state, whether daily or weekly to make cleanliness their guiding principle.

He noted that the state government would not allow trading in a dirty and unkempt environment especially now that cholera and other communicable diseases are spreading across the country.

Responding, the Iyaloja of Iberekodo Market, Monsurat Oladipupo, assured the state government of their readiness to clean the market so that it could be opened for trading activities soon.

Cholera Outbreak: At Least 33 Persons Killed In Yobe, Jigawa

PHOTO USED TO ILLUSTRATE STORY: Medical staff give treatment to people suffering from cholera at a medical camp. PHOTO: AFP

 

The outbreak of Cholera has claimed no fewer than 33 persons in both Yobe and Jigawa states.

In Yobe State, three deaths have been recorded with two others hospitalised at Girgir Community in Jakusko Local Government Area of the state.

This comes less than three days after 30 persons were reported killed in Jigawa State following the outbreak of Cholera across nine local government areas of the state.

The Executive Secretary, Yobe State Primary Health Care Management Agency, Babagana Kundi Machina told Channels Television on Thursday that the index case in Yobe came from neighbouring state Jigawa.

READ ALSO: Kidnapped Doctor Regains Freedom In Kogi

The Jigawa casualties add to the increasing death toll from the disease across Nigeria. Other states that have reported deaths from cholera in the past few weeks include Enugu, Benue, Plateau, and Bayelsa.

Over 2,000 cases have been recorded in Jigawa with the state Capital, Dutse, and Hadejia local government areas the worst affected.

The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Health in Jigawa, Salisu Mu’azu on Wednesday, during a press briefing blamed open defecation for the spread of the disease.

Jakusko local government area in Yobe State shares border with Jigawa and Bauchi states which have recently witnessed the outbreak.

Earlier in May, at least 20 persons died in a cholera outbreak in Bauchi.

The outbreak of the disease in the state hit the capital, Bauchi the most with 147 cases recorded there, out of the 322 cases confirmed cases in nine local government areas.