An outbreak of diphtheria infection has claimed 61 lives in Kano State as of March 2, 2023.
The Kano State Case Manager, Dr Salma Suwaid, disclosed this on Monday at a webinar organised by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control and Prevention with the theme ‘Diptheria outbreak in Nigeria: Vaccination Response.’
Dr Suwaid also said a total of 783 patients have been on admission so far. Of this number, 360 were females and 423 were males.
Diphtheria is a serious bacterial infection caused by the bacterium called Corynebacterium species that affects the nose, throat, and sometimes, skin of an individual.
Diphtheria spreads easily between people through direct contact with infected people droplets from coughing or sneezing, and contact with contaminated clothing and objects.
The ongoing diphtheria outbreak and the associated high-case fatality were due to a combination of low vaccination coverage, and the absence of diphtheria antitoxin during the early stage of the outbreak.
So far, the infection has been confirmed in Kano, Yobe, Lagos, Osun, and Katsina states.