Nigeria grappled with known and unknown ailments in 2017.
For context, 2017 was the year when First Lady Aisha Buhari disclosed that the Aso Rock clinic had no syringe or x-ray facilities to call its own--even after receiving billions of naira in budgetary allocations through the years.
Here are the health scares that made Nigerians doubly worried in 2017…
In November, the people of Gidan Dugus in Wangara District, Dutse Local Government of Jigawa State, reportedly lost 50 children to a “strange ailment”.
One parent, Haladu Usman, told the media that she lost seven children to the ailment.
“Within 14 days, I lost seven of my children, 3 boys and 4 girls. The children died one after the other,” Usman said.
Another parent, Salisu Abdullahi, said the community had left everything in God’s hands.
“I was dead scared by this unknown sickness which consumed the lives of our innocent children. We have intensified our daily prayers for Allah to protect this community,” Abdullahi said.
The viral monkeypox disease gave a lot of folks quite the scare in 2017 as it spread from one city to the next before government efforts stopped it dead in its tracks.
There were a handful of deaths from the monkeypox disease as well, with healthcare practitioners warning folks to stay off bushmeat while they could.
A strange ailment took lives in Kwara and Kogi State in 2017.
In Kogi, Dr Jannette Hathorn of the ECWA hospital in Egbe, told the press that medical professionals had been unable to tell what ailment it was.
“We are sure it is not lassa fever; but our concern is that we do not know exactly what is happening. We have not arrived at a definitive diagnosis”, Hathorn said.
She added that; “Two adult patients were also brought here; one showed symptoms of ulcer-viral illness, but there was no bleeding component of any haemorrhagic symptom.
“We isolated them and both of them were treated for malaria. When they started improving, we let them go.
“Another parent brought a child to the hospital and pleaded for help. He said that 50 people had died in their village with similar symptoms of bloodstained vomiting, diarrhea and fever”.
The ailment that claimed lives in Kwara and Kogi remains mysterious till this day.
In August, Lassa Fever claimed the lives of two persons in Nigeria’s commercial capital city of Lagos.
Chief Medical Director at the Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH), Prof Chris Bode, told the press that about 100 hospital workers had been exposed to the index case and were being monitored.
It was all the rest of the country needed to slip into panic mode.