Integrated disease surveillance and response activities will reduce the adverse impact of predictable and unpredicted public health emergencies.
Ihekweazu,who was represented by Dr Lawal Bakare,Technical Assistant of Communication, NCDC, said this during the 7th Annual Symposium of the Health Writers Association of Nigeria (HEWAN),in Lagos.
According to him, this will reduce the adverse impact of predictable and unpredicted public health emergencies.
“Every report of cases makes us get accurate measure of the burden of infectious diseases in Nigeria.
“It ensures Nigeria to meet the international obligations as a member of the World Health Assembly.
“Last year,we had to go back to Borno to control some outbreak of diseases in the state, and this made us to discover the polio case.
“We had to collaborate with all the local governments in the state to be able to detect and respond to all the disease outbreaks in the state,” Ihekweazu said.
He said that the support of every state was needed in order to develop more laboratory service network, to support the detection,
prevention and response to critical infectious diseases.
”Recruiting more personnel outside the country to train people on how to control every outbreak diseases is very important.
“It helps us to trace every outbreak in every local government and state in the country,” Ihekweazu said.
“Lassa fever and Ebola, which are transmitted mostly by animals, made us to collaborate with Ministry of Health to establish one health approach.
”We invented the event-based approach through the laboratory, to be able to disseminate any disease report and confirm the diseases.”
Ihekweazu said print and online media were used as surveillance units to get the actual reports of every disease weekly.
“Developing health messages to the people, especially to the grassroots levels, is done through the local governments.
“We provide sample materials such as kits to the local government to get reports of weekly reports and emergency outbreaks,” he said.