style[amp-boilerplate] Meningitis kills 21 in Sokoto- Commissioner

Meningitis kills 21 in Sokoto- Commissioner

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Sokoto State Health Commissioner,

Dr. Balarabe Kakale, has confirmed

that the death toll of the ravaging

meningitis epidemic in the state has

now risen to 21.

He spoke during an interview with

NAN in Sokoto yesterday, as he gave

an update on the state of high alert

declared by the ministry since

20 March.

The deaths were recorded in the

seven local governments of Kebbe,

Bodinga, Rabah, Wamakko, Gada,

Dange/Shuni and Tureta, mostly

affected by the meningitis outbreak.

Kakale said: "The state government

has, since Monday, deployed no

fewer than 15 medical teams,

comprising of over 150 medical

personnel. They were deployed

across the 23 local governments of

the state, fully equipped with

ambulances and provided with free

drugs, as well as medicament."

He added that the "emergency

response teams are conducting

house-to-house search, definition

and management, both at home and

the hospitals. They have, so far,

treated no fewer than 330 mixed

cases of severe malaria and

meningitis across the seven top-hit

local governments.

"Out of the 330 cases, 40 were

confirmed in the laboratories to be

cases of meningitis, out of which 14

fatalities were recorded. These 14

deaths excluded the seven deaths

earlier recorded in parts of Gada

local government."

Kakale, who further noted that

thousands of other cases were

treated at the Primary Health

Centres in the local governments,

added that there were some

"imported cases" from Koko in Kebbi

State, which compounded the


He also lamented that traditional

belief in witchcraft was making

fighting the disease difficult, with

some families refusing to take their

suspected patients to the hospitals.

"You will see suspected cases having

symptoms of meningitis like

vomiting, high fever, headache and

steepness of the neck, but, they will

not be conveyed to the health


"The people of the state should

disregard rumours of witchcraft and

take all suspected persons to the

hospitals early. Keeping them at

home will only make the disease

worse and cause transmission to

other members of the family."

He counselled them on steps to take

to reduce the epidemic and also

advised them against sleeping in

over-crowded rooms, as well as

ensure personal and environmental


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