• Friday, July 19, 2024
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NCDC activates emergency centre as cholera death toll reaches 53

Towards lasting solution to cholera outbreak in Nigeria

The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has activated its Emergency Operating Centre (EOC) following a cholera outbreak that has now claimed 53 lives.

The Centre on Monday reported that as of June 24, 2024, there have been 1,528 suspected cases and 53 deaths reported across 31 states and 107 Local Government Areas (LGAs), resulting in a case fatality rate of 3.5%.

“The fatalities are not just statistics but represent significant losses to families and communities, including healthcare workers and team members,” Jide Idris, the NCDC director-general said.

Idris said the decision to activate the National Cholera EOC underscores the seriousness of the outbreak and reflects the agency’s commitment to safeguarding public health.

He highlighted that the situation is worsening with the intensification of the rainy season, which increases the risk of cholera transmission.

According to the DG, the EOC will coordinate the national response, support affected states, facilitate rapid communication, and ensure efficient resource deployment.

“The EOC will act as the nerve centre for response coordination, data analysis, and decision-making processes,”  Idris explained.

“It will also mobilize resources, expertise, and support from the NCDC, partners, and stakeholders at all government levels.”

Cholera is a food and water-borne disease caused by ingesting the Vibrio cholerae bacterium found in contaminated water and food. Contamination often occurs through the faeces of infected individuals, and can happen at the source, during transportation, or storage. Food contamination may occur through soiled hands during preparation or eating.

Populations at risk include those with limited access to clean water and sanitation, poor hygiene practices, and healthcare workers providing direct patient care without proper precautions. The NCDC emphasizes the need for coordinated actions to manage and control the outbreak, especially in vulnerable communities.