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Tuesday, October 3, 2023

Adamawa cholera outbreak may spread to Cameroon, WHO warns

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has warned that if the outbreak of cholera in parts of Adamawa State in Nigeria continues it may spread to other areas and across the border to Cameroon, and thus posing a major public health threat.

Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus
Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director General of the World Health Organisation (WHO). Photo credit: FABRICE COFFRINI/AFP/Getty Images

The organisation on its Twitter Handle @WHONigeria on Saturday, June 9, 2019 said that a month into the outbreak, it had recorded 1,168 cases and 20 deaths in Mubi North and Mubi South Local Government Areas (LGAs) of the state.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) recalls that during its first report of cholera outbreak in the state in May the organisation said that it recorded 434 cases of the disease and 13 deaths as at May 26.

WHO, however, reassured that it was carrying out continuous disease surveillance activities in Mubi North and Mubi South LGAs and managing a cholera treatment centre in collaboration with state health authorities.

It said that it has also ensured the chlorination of commercial sources of water and was presently conducting house-to-house active case search to prevent any spread of the disease.

WHO assured that it was leaving “no stone unturned” to ensure that the outbreak does not spread beyond the immediate vicinities of the two councils.

“Disease surveillance in emergencies can be tasking especially where insecurity, difficult terrain and frequent displacements hamper accessibility to the affected populations.

“Robust surveillance characterised by early detection, rapid and coordinated response are, however, critical in bringing outbreaks under control and reducing threat of further spread.

“New cases are being reported every day due to an active house-to-house surveillance led and coordinated by WHO.

“The case fatality ratio was 17 per cent as at May 12, but dropped to 1.7 per cent as at June 7, an indication that cases are being detected and reported early by the surveillance team.”

The organisation said that it has so far visited at least 3,141 households, disinfected up to 893 of these households including their neighbours and sensitised up to 7,199 persons in the community.

By Yashim Katurak

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