The Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) has raised alarm over possible outbreak of Cerebro-Spinal Meningitis (CSM) in Kogi, urging the state government and relevant stakeholders to be proactive.
The state Acting Chairman of NMA, Dr Godwin Tijani, spoke in Lokoja on Thursday, while reacting to the recent reported cases of meningitis in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
Dr Lawal Bakare, the Technical Assistant (Communication), Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, had on Monday declared that the Federal Government was making efforts to stop the disease from spreading.
Bakare said the government had activated an Emergency Operations Centre to manage the ongoing outbreak of the disease in five North-West states.
“As of April 3, 2017, a total of 2,997 suspected cases of CSM were reported in 16 states out of which 146 have been laboratory-confirmed. Unfortunately, 336 deaths have also been recorded,’’ he said.
Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia describes meningitis as “an acute inflammation of the protective membranes covering the brain and spinal cord, known collectively as the meninges."
“The most common symptoms are fever, headache and neck stiffness. Other symptoms include confusion or altered consciousness, vomiting, and an inability to tolerate light or loud noises.’’
According to Tijani, meningitis is a big threat to our state now, since the case has been reported in Abuja, being a transit to Kogi.
“We are at a great risk since we cannot control or screen the influx of people passing through Kogi to the neighbouring states."
“ It will be very difficult to identify anyone carrying the causative agent.”
He said that the state had yet to record any case of Type ‘C’ Cerebrospinal meningitis, but expressed concern over the possible outbreak of CSM, if precautionary measures were not taken.
The doctor urged people to avoid sleeping in an overcrowded room and maintain a ventilated environment to avert outbreak of the disease.
Tijani also urged the general public to report to the nearest health centre, any person noticed with the symptoms of fever, persistent headache, neck stiffness and pain, nausea, vomiting and drowsiness.
He appealed to the electricity distribution companies to help avert the outbreak of meningitis in the country.
According to him, regular power supply will reduce heat and make people to sleep well in their homes.
“Most of the cases of meningitis reported today are traceable to excessive heat which is not good for the body,” Tijani said.