By Danladi Al-Hassan
The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) on Sunday in a situation report reported that the ongoing yellow fever outbreak in Bauchi State has killed no fewer than 23 persons, infected 169 others and spread to Borno, Kano, Gombe, and Katsina.
NCDC in a report of a cluster of the ailment said the nation was responding well to the challenge posed to the people who were either residents or visitors in Alkaleri Local Council of Bauchi since the August 1, 2019 outbreak in Bauchi State.
The centre said suspected and confirmed cases with an epidemiological link to Bauchi have been reported in Borno, Kano, Gombe, and Katsina states, adding that the first incident was recorded on August 29 in Kano from a victim who had visited the Yankari Game Reserve.
The NCDC gave a breakdown of the infections to include 169 suspected cases; 10 presumptive positives incidents (IgM positive on serology); 15 confirmed ones by RT-PCR; 23 deaths; and five states being affected.
Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu, Chief Executive Officer/Director General DG of the centre, said the National Yellow Fever Technical Working Group (TWG) activated the national Incident Management System (IMS) to coordinate the response activities on September 5, 2019.
An analysis of the Epidemiology Summary from weeks 35 to 37 by the NCDC showed: “One hundred and sixty-nine suspected cases have been reported in 41 local government areas (LGAS) in five states of Bauchi (35); Borno (65); Gombe (seven); Kano (four); and Katsina (58). The number of samples collected among suspected cases are 151 (89.3 percent).
“The number of presumptive positives is 10 (IgM positive on serology) and one inconclusive was recorded – Borno – six, Kano – one, Katsina – three and one inconclusive from Borno).”
He said all samples had been sent to the Institut Pasteur Dakar (IP Dakar), Senegal, for further testing.
Ihekweazu pointed out a total of 15 cases had been confirmed in Nigerian laboratories using RT-PCR, adding that the NCDC National Reference Laboratory, Gaduwa confirmed 14 cases; Lagos University Teaching Hospital, one); eight cases from Bauchi; five from Katsina; and one each in Kano and Gombe.
The NCDC boss said a total of 23 deaths had been recorded among suspected cases – Bauchi (nine); Kano (one); and Katsina (13) with a case fatality rate (CFR) of 13.6 percent. The epidemiologist said the outbreak response activities were being coordinated by a multi-agency National Yellow Fever Emergency Operation Centre hosted at NCDC and the National Rapid Response Team (RRT), as interventions have gone to Bauchi State.