Diphtheria claims 122 children’s lives in Nigeria – UNICEF

Diphtheria claims 122 children’s lives in Nigeria – UNICEF
Diphtheria claims 122 children’s lives in Nigeria – UNICEF

Africa-Press – Nigeria. UNICEF’s Communication Officer in Nigeria, Ms Safiya Akau, on Thursday, said diphtheria has claimed the lives of 122 children in Nigeria as at July 2023.

UNICEF, according to her, was amplifying its efforts to counter the growing outbreak of diphtheria that has affected children in 27 States of Nigeria.

Akau quoted Ms Cristian Munduate, UNICEF Representative in Nigeria as saying, “diphtheria is a serious infection caused by strains of bacteria called Corynebacterium diphtheriae that makes toxins.

“It can lead to difficulty in breathing, heart rhythm problems, and death.”

She added that it usually affects the mucous membranes of the nose and throat.

Akau explained that 1,387 of the cases of diphtheria were confirmed of the 3,850 suspected cases that were reported as of July.

The UNICEF’s Communication Officer stated that States like Kano, Yobe, Katsina, Lagos, Sokoto, Zamfara and the FCT are affected with diphtheria and accounted for 98 per cent of the suspected cases.

She noted that children between the ages of two and 14 years accounted for 71.5 per cent of confirmed cases.

She said it was heart-breaking to note that only 22 per cent of the confirmed cases received their routine childhood immunisation vaccinations.

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