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NCDC confirms 1,534 diphtheria cases, 137 deaths


The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control and Prevention has confirmed a total of 1,534 cases of diphtheria in the country.

The NCDC said a total of 4,160 suspected cases have been reported from 27 states across 139 Local Government Areas in the country.

The NCDC disclosed this in its diphtheria situation report from May 2022 to July 2023, released on its website.

The confirmed cases were distributed across 56 LGAs in Kano (1,207), Yobe (252); Bauchi (41); Katsina (nine); Lagos (eight); FCT (six); Kaduna (five).

Others are Niger (two); Gombe (two); Osun (one); Jigawa (one); and Cross River (one).

The report noted that Kano (3,233), Yobe (477), Katsina (132), Kaduna (101), Bauchi (54), FCT (41) and Lagos (30) account for 97.8 per cent of the suspected cases.

The report partly read, “Of the 4,160 suspected cases reported, 1,534 (36.9 per cent) were confirmed (87 lab-confirmed; 158 epid linked; 1,289 clinically compatible), 1,700 (40.9 per cent) were discarded, 639 (15.4 per cent )are pending classification and 287 (6.9 per cent) unknown.

“The confirmed cases were distributed across 56 LGAs in 10 states. The majority [1,018 (66.4 per cent)] of the confirmed cases occurred in children aged one to 14 years.

“A total of 137 deaths were recorded among all confirmed cases (CFR: 8.9 per cent). Out of the 1,534 confirmed cases reported, 1,257 (81.9 per cent) were not fully vaccinated against diphtheria.”

Diphtheria caused by a toxin produced by the bacteria Corynebacterium diphtheriae, is a vaccine-preventable disease covered by one of the vaccines provided routinely through Nigeria’s childhood immunisation schedule.

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