The Jigawa State Ministry of Health has confirmed an outbreak of diphtheria in the state, with no fewer than 91 suspected cases and 10 deaths.
The Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Dr Salisu Mu’azu, made this known while addressing newsmen in Dutse.
He disclosed that two confirmed cases had been identified in Kazaure and Jahun Local Government Areas, with additional samples sent to Abuja for examination.
“The outbreak appears to have struck hardest in areas where routine immunization coverage was lacking,” the Permanent Secretary said.
He further emphasized that the state government had been proactive in responding to the situation, especially following reports of diphtheria outbreaks in neighbouring states like Kano and Yobe.
Mu’azu underscored that the Ministry had diligently collected vital information and data from the affected regions and promptly informed the National Primary Healthcare Development Agency and the National Disease Control for coordinated intervention.
“The state government is now actively preparing to administer vaccines once they become available”, he said.
Mu’azu equally attributed the outbreak to disruptions in healthcare services caused by the COVID-19 pandemic a few years ago, which led to the suspension of routine immunization efforts, leaving the population vulnerable to such outbreaks.