Global Alert and Response (GAR)

Meningococcal disease in Nigeria

As of 8 February 2009, the Ministry of Health of the Federal Republic of Nigeria has reported 1364 suspected cases of meningococcal disease including 108 deaths (case-fatality rate: 7.9%) in 19 out of 37 states. So far 30 Local Government Areas (LGA) in 8 states have crossed the alert or the epidemic threshold. In the last week, 11 LGAs crossed the epidemic threshold, and 600 suspected cases including 40 deaths were reported across the country.

Cerebrospinal fluid specimens collected from Jigawa state have tested positive for Neisseria meningitidis serogroup A by latex test. The International Coordinating Group (ICG) on Vaccine Provision for Epidemic Meningitis Control has approved the release of 268 750 doses of polysaccharide vaccine for a mass vaccination campaign in two affected LGAs in Jigawa state.

WHO is supporting the Federal and National Ministry of Health in the submission of additional requests to the ICG to secure vaccine for the remaining affected areas. WHO is supporting the Ministry of Health to strengthen epidemiological and laboratory surveillance and data management.

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