Mysterious epidemics in Matazu: Katsina says 18 not 115 died



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Mysterious epidemics in Matazu: Katsina says 18 not 115 died

By Augustine Okezie, Katsina



The Katsina State government on Saturday debunked reports by some media houses that 115 people have died in a mysterious disease outbreak which hit Matazu Local Government Area during the week, insisting that reported cases stand at 45, with 18 recorded deaths.

The Executive Secretary of the State’s Primary Health Care Development Agency, PHCDA, Dr Shamsudeen Yahaya, told The Nation during an exclusive interview that 11 samples already collected from patients in Matazu Local Government Area, were subjected to laboratory tests, out of which five were returned negative while the results of the remaining six were being awaited to enable the personnel confirm whether the attack is yellow fever or not.



He said: “We have a line list of the victims collected serially with clear indications of the Epid numbers, names, ages, sex, onset specimen and their outcomes – whether dead or alive.’

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“We are equally worried about the attitude of some citizens towards vaccination and refusal to accept healthcare services, despite the fact that the state government spends heavily on healthcare delivery.’’

The PHCDA boss further disclosed that Kofar Shia Ruwa in Matazu Ward A is the worst hit in the outbreak and that currently 88% of total targeted population of 154,152 has been covered on yellow fever vaccination in Matazu.

Meanwhile, the Permanent Secretary of the State Ministry of Health, Dr Kabir Mustapha, has stated that it has completely vaccinated about 6.3million citizens against yellow fever attacks and other sundry epidermises, insisting that with the conclusion of the vaccination campaigns in 33 out of the 34 local government areas in the state, there is no much cause for concern on the yellow fever outbreak in the state.

Mustapha, who told The Nation in another exclusive interview that the state government is always proactive in handling heathcare challenges, further assured that with the acquisition of about 7m vaccines plus the current massive campaign efforts, the state is no longer vulnerable to yellow fever attacks.

He said: “We have recorded over 80% coverage of the state‘s population in the vaccination campaign targeting the ages of nine months to 44 years. Our major concern now is to find out whether the victims have accessed vaccination, whether they migrated from one location to another, and whether the vaccination they received was subjected to forensic investigation to establish its potency.’’

Mysterious epidemics in Matazu: Katsina says 18 not 115 died

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