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Cholera: NBMA Cautions Nigerians, Issues Urgent Public Health Advisory

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The director-general, National Biosafety Management Agency, Dr. Agnes Asagbra.
The director-general, National Biosafety Management Agency, Dr. Agnes Asagbra.

The National Biosafety Management Agency (NBMA) has urged the general public to be cautious due to the recent cholera outbreak in several states across Nigeria.

In a statement released to journalists in Abuja on Friday, June 14, 2024, the director-general of NBMA, Dr. Yemisi Asagbra stated that Nigerians must be cautious as Nigeria has recorded 30 deaths and 1,141 suspected cases of the disease.

“As we approach the festive period of the Salah celebrations, it is crucial that we collectively prioritise the health and safety of our communities,” she said.

Cholera, a highly contagious bacterial infection caused by consuming contaminated food or water, has been reported in Bayelsa, Zamfara, Abia, Cross River, Bauchi, Delta, Katsina, Imo, Nasarawa and Lagos States.

Asagbra stated that NBMA, in collaboration with health authorities, is actively monitoring the situation and implementing measures to contain the spread of the disease.

She also urged Nigerians to adopt various hygiene practices such as boiling drinking water or using certified water purification methods, washing hands thoroughly with soap and water, especially before eating or preparing food, and after using the toilet, cooking food thoroughly and consuming it while hot, avoiding raw foods such as fruits and vegetables unless they can be peeled or washed with safe water and keeping the environment clean while properly disposing of waste to prevent contamination.

“NBMA urges all Nigerians to be vigilant and adhere to these hygiene practices to protect themselves and their loved ones from cholera. We also encourage community leaders and health workers to disseminate this information and assist in educating the public about preventive measures.”

She urged Nigerians to be alert and report any cases of cholera to the nearest hospital. “If you or anyone you know exhibits symptoms of cholera, such as severe diarrhoea, dehydration, and vomiting, seek urgent medical attention at the nearest hospital. Early diagnosis and treatment are crucial.”

The statement by the agency’s head of information and communications, Gloria Ogbaki stated that NBMA is committed to safeguarding the health of the Nigerian people. “Together, we can overcome this challenge and ensure a safe and healthy celebration for all.”

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