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COVID-19: NPHCDA Crosses 1m Vaccination Threshold

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The National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) said 30,452 Nigerian residents have received shots of COVID-19 vaccine on Friday bringing the number of jabs so far to 1.08 million.

The NPHCDA disclosed this on its official Twitter handle on Friday.

The agency said that 30,452 people have taken the first dose of the Oxford AstraZeneca vaccine.

“As of today, April 16, some 1,081,548 representing 53.

8 per cent of the eligible persons targeted with the AstraZeneca vaccine have been administered their first dose in this vaccination phase.

“The 1,081,548, were eligible Nigerians who have been vaccinated in 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT),” it said.

The agency said that the figure was more than half of the percentage of target reached with first dose of COVID-19 vaccine in the country.

The immunisation agency disclosed that out of  the 1,081,548 people given the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine in the country , 8,439 people have suffered mild Adverse Events Following Immunization (AEFI).

It added that 52 people had moderate to severe adverse effects on receiving the shots.

It explained that the mild reactions include body pains and swelling, the moderate to severe adverse effects presented were fever, vomiting, diarrhoea headaches, dizziness and allergic reactions.

The immunisation agency disclosed that there was no death from the administration of the vaccine and “no case of blood clots related to the administration of the vaccines have been diagnosed in the country.”

It  said that  five states have the highest records of the AEFI namely: Kaduna (970); Cross River (859); Yobe (541); Kebbi (511); and Lagos (448).

The NPHCDA said that the cases were being investigated to ensure they were caused by vaccination.

According to it, states with coverage above 100 per cent have vaccinated more than the 50 per cent of eligible population required for the first dose.

The NPHCDA said that Lagos state topped the total clients vaccinated in the country  by administering 200,602 and Kano with 57, 900.

It said that they were followed by kaduna, 56,238; while Ogun  with 52,906 and the FCT with 46,049 had all received their first dose of Oxford AstraZeneca.

For the country to achieve high immunity against COVID-19, it has set an ambitious goal of vaccinating 40 per cent of its over 200 million population before the end of 2021.

The country also hopes to attain 70 per cent by the end of 2022.

The country began vaccination since March 5, 2021 with healthcare workers who are mostly at risk to the infections being the first responders.

It noted that the vaccine roll-out would be in four phases, starting with health workers, frontline workers, COVID-19 rapid response team, laboratory network, policemen, petrol station workers and strategic leaders.

“Phase 2 – Older adults aged 50 years and above. Those with co-morbidities aged 18 – 49 years of age

“Phase 3 – Those in states/LGAs with high disease burden and who missed phases 1 and 2.

“Phase 4 – Other eligible population as vaccines become available,” it’s said.

The immunization agency said that as of April 15, 2021, just 1,051.096 shots had been administered in 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

It noted that the proportion of eligible people vaccinated in the country was 52. 2 per cent as of April ,15.

NAN recalls that the country took delivery of 3.94 million doses of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccines through COVAX, an UN-backed effort that promises access to free vaccines for up to 20 per cent of participating countries’ population.

The delivery is part of an overall 16 million doses planned to be delivered to Nigeria in batches over the next months.

Besides, on March 21, 2021 the country received another 300,000 doses of same vaccines from telecom giant, MTN.

On April 6, the government of India also delivered 100,000 doses of Covishield COVID-19 vaccines to Nigeria.

The COVISHIELD, a brand of the Oxford AstraZeneca vaccine also manufactured is used in over 71 countries including the UK, Canada, India and Brazil.

With only about 4.4million doses of COVID-19 vaccines available in the country, Nigeria is still far from reaching its set target, according to health experts.

Due to limited doses of vaccine availability, the Federal government directed the states to halt vaccination once it used half of the doses allocated to them.

The Government said that the directive became necessary since the country was not sure when next batch of AstraZeneca vaccines would arrive the country.

“We believe that in a situation where, we still cannot specifically determine when the next batch of AstraZeneca vaccines will arrive, then I think wisdom only dictates that it is better for us to vaccinate people fully.

“It is so that we can say that we have a pool of citizens that have been fully vaccinated since this vaccination comes in two doses,” it explained.(NAN)

Health

Lassa Fever Claims 10 Lives in Ebonyi

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The Ebonyi Ministry of Health disclosed that Lassa Fever killed 10 persons in the state from Jan. 4 to Feb. 16, 2024.

The Disease Surveillance Notification Officer of the ministry, Mr Sampson Orogwu, made the disclosure in a statement issued in Abakaliki.

Orogwu stated that 25 persons were infected, including two healthcare workers.

He added  that “16 out of the 25 infected persons are males, while nine are females.

“The dead include a pregnant woman and two children.

“The affected local government areas include: Onicha, Ikwo, Ezza North, Ebonyi, Izzi, Ohaukwu and Abakaliki with Hausa quarters and Nkaliki areas in Abakaliki recording the highest number of cases.

He, therefore,  urged residents to report suspected cases to the ministry as treatment is free.

The State Epidemiologist, Dr Ogbonna Nwambeke, also in the statement, said the state government had been collaborating with relevant partners to check spread of the disease

He said “we call for the provision of logistics to increase surveillance and community engagement against risk factors.

“People are also advised to stop bush burning, avoid eating rats and not to touch any surface touched by an infected person.

“We also advise people to maintain high level of personal and environmental hygiene such as covering their food and utensils properly.

Nwambeke appreciated the state government’s provision of Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs) to health workers at the National Obstetrics Fistula Centre to secure their lives and to save others.

Lassa fever is an acute viral haemorrhagic illness caused by Lassa virus, a member of the arenavirus family of viruses.

Humans usually become infected with Lassa virus through exposure to food or household items contaminated with urine or faeces of infected Mastomys rats.

It’s common in West Africa. Most people get mild symptoms, like fever and headache. (NAN)

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Health

Hospital Creates Toxicology Ward to Address Mental Health Issues in Kaduna

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The Federal Neuro-Psychiatric Hospital Barnawa Kaduna said it has created a toxicology ward to address mental health issues in the state..

Its Medical Director, Aishatu Yusha’u-Armiya’u disclosed this on Sunday in Kaduna.

She said the ward allowed the separation of psychiatric patients diagnosed with various forms of psychiatric conditions from those with substance use disorder.

The medical director said, ” This permits the design of a clear plan for the management and rehabilitation of people with substance use disorder.

NAN reports that a toxicology unit identifies, quantifies and determines the amount of) drugs, alcohols, and poison in biological samples such as blood, urine or tissue.

Yusha’u-Armiya’u added that drug information and pharmacovigilance units were also created in the Pharmacy Department.

” These units are responsible for the provision of drugs related information and creating awareness on the presence of dangerous and substandard pharmaceuticals to both staff and patients within the institution.

” The pharmacy department has been provided with a functional and equipped compounding unit which is responsible for the production of all the relevant consumables needed in the hospital.

“In my first year in the office, I ensured that all the consumables needed in the hospital were produced by the pharmacy department,” she said.  (NAN)

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International Condom Day: AHF distributes  condoms, to launch STIs clinic in Benue

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From Attah Ede, Makurdi

As part of activities marking the 2024  International Condom Day, AIDS Healthcare Foundation in Nigeria, on Tuesday,  distributed thousands of  condoms to both young and older people in Makurdi, the Benue State capital.

Furthermore,  AHF has concluded arrangements to build STIs clinic in Benue State and the Federal Capital Territory Abuja to cater for the treatment of sexually transmitted infections in Nigeria.

Addressing journalists at the end of a road walk and distribution of condoms and flyers, the AHF  Advocacy and Marketing Manager in Benue State, Steve Aborishade explained that the International Condom Day is usually celebrated on February 13th as a global event, a day before Valentine’s Day in a bid to promote prevention of STDs, including HIV and unwanted pregnancies through free condom distribution, safer sex awareness events and HIV Testing Services.

He said AHF is aware of what happens among young people during Valentine’s day, hence  to share love, and in sharing love, there is a lot of sex.

Dr. Aborishade stated AHF always advice young people to abstain from sex  but a situation whereby they are not ready to abstain they should always use condom  and use it properly.

 He disclosed that there  rising cases of Sexually Transmitted Infections(STIs) and cases of HIV among the young generation, adding that it is important to give the right education and right information about safe sex.

“That is why the Internatioal condom day is to reach out to the people and to educate the young people to use condom when having sex. Again we also encourage young people to abstain from sex which is the best decision but majority of young people can’t and that’s why we are encouraging them to  use the condoms properly and frequently”.

“We  are partnering with, Apin, Bensaca, Network of youth organizations to create awareness . The theme of this year celebration i is “Just use it” . These condoms are being distributed today in 7 states. We are  also starting an STI clinic in June at AHF in Makurdi and Abuja and it is strictly for STI treatment.

 “Some people have STI and they dont know they have it but with the establishement of the clinic, people would have opportunity to be attended to”, he said.

In her remark, the state Commissioner for woman affairs and social development, Mrs. Ann Itodo commended AHF for creating awareness about safer sex and the need to control STIs  amongst youths in the State.

Mrs. Itodo who was represented by director of women in the ministry, Mrs. Magdalene Doo  said everyone must be involved in the fight against HIV/AIDS and other STis in the state .

She assured that the ministry is ready to collaborate with AHF to educate and enlighten the people of the State and call on the organization to join the ministry to celebrate this year’s Internatioal women’s day in order to create more awareness about STIs in the State. 

Also speaking, the AHF prevention coordinator Benue state, Mrs. Amina Iyaji, maintained that the rate of STIs has reduced drastically due to activities of the organization and assured that they would continue to create more awareness about safe sex.

On her part,  the head of link unit, Apin public health prevention initiatives, Mrs. Lucy Tembe, they would continue to partner with AHF to eradicate STIs in the State.

She maintained that Apin has be able to  render services to prevent diseases among youths in the State and called on other stakeholders to promote safe sex in the State.

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