The Federal Government has reported a total of 11,587 suspected cases of diphtheria in the nation, with 7,202 confirmed cases spanning 105 local government areas (LGAs) across 18 states, including the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (NCDC) released these statistics on Monday, September 25, providing an update on the situation.
The highest number of confirmed cases, 6,185 in total, were recorded in Kano, while other states with cases included Yobe (640), Katsina (213), Borno (95), Kaduna (16), Jigawa (14), Bauchi (8), Lagos (8), FCT (5), Gombe (5), Osun (3), Sokoto (3), Niger (2), Cross River (1), Enugu (1), Imo (1), Nasarawa (1), and Zamfara (1), as stated in the report.
Of the confirmed cases, the majority, accounting for 5,299 cases (73.6 percent), affected children between the ages of one and 14, with those aged five to 14 experiencing the highest burden of the disease.
The report further noted that there have been 453 fatalities among the confirmed cases, resulting in a case fatality rate (CFR) of 6.3 percent.
In response to the escalating outbreak, primarily involving 80 percent unvaccinated cases, the Coordinating Minister of Health and Social Welfare, Prof Muhammad Pate, has established a national emergency task team. Diphtheria is a dangerous infection caused by Corynebacterium diphtheriae, a bacteria known for producing harmful toxins.