8 dies as Monkeypox outbreak hits Nigeria with 558 cases

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The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has confirmed circulation of the disease with 558 cases and eight deaths in 32 states of the federation.

Monkeypox is a rare viral infection, which kills one in every 10 patients, but does not spread swiftly. An epidemiological summary on the ailment published, yesterday, by the NCDC, pointed out that since September 2017, Nigeria has continued to report sporadic cases of the disease, with a National Technical Working Group (TWG) monitoring infections and strengthening preparedness/response capacity.

The centre said 46 suspected infections were reported between January 1 and April 30 this year in addition to 15 confirmed cases from seven states –Adamawa (three), Lagos (three), Cross River (two), Abuja (two), Kano (two), Delta (two) and Imo (one) – but no death had been recorded.

The NCDC said 10 new suspected cases in April were reported from seven states – Bayelsa (three), Lagos (two), Kano (one), FCT (one), Delta (one), Edo (one) and Ogun (one).

The five new positive cases in the month were confirmed from four states – Lagos (two), FCT (one), Kano (one) and Delta (one).
From September 2017 to April 30, 2022, a total of 558 suspected cases were reported from 32 states.

It noted that of the reported cases, 241 (43.2 per cent) have been confirmed in 22 states – Rivers (52), Bayelsa (43), Lagos (33), Delta (31), Cross River (16), Edo (10), Imo (nine), Akwa Ibom (seven), Oyo (six), FCT (eight), Enugu (four), Abia (three), Plateau (three), Adamawa (three), Nasarawa (two), Benue (two), Anambra (two), Ekiti (two), Kano (two), Ebonyi (one), Niger (one) and Ogun (one).

The NCDC said eight deaths have been recorded with Case Fatality Ratio (CFR) of 3.3 per cent in six states – namely Edo (two), Lagos (two), Imo (one), Cross River (one), FCT (one) and Rivers (one) – from September 2017 to April 30, 2022.

Minister of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire, who stated this at the national flag-off and dissemination of the Nigerian Essential Diagnostics List (NEDL), yesterday, in Abuja, explained that government “is working to improve the country’s poor health indices through the newly developed Essential Diagnostics List (EDL), which would facilitate access to treatment and promote affordable prices.”

He said Nigeria “is the first country to develop her EDL in Africa, and second in the world, following India.” Also speaking, the World Health Organisation (WHO) Country Representative, Dr. Walter Mulombo, observed that the National Essential Diagnostic List “is anticipated to complement and enhance the impact of the Essential Medicines List (EML), which has recorded great improvement in availability and affordability of medicines and quality of patient management.”