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Public Health: Nigeria, Gavi partner for emergency cholera vaccine donations

*The Federal Government of Nigeria partners with Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, for emergency vaccine donations in view of an expectant surge in cholera outbreak across the West African country

Isola Moses | ConsumerConnect

In response to recent cholera outbreaks, the Federal Government is partnering with Vaccine Alliance, Gavi, for emergency vaccine donations in case of a shortage amid an expectant surge in cholera outbreak across the West African country.

ConsumerConnect reports Dr. Sania Nishtar, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Gavi, who disclosed this Thursday, June 27, 2024, in a post via her X handle @SaniaNishtar, said the organisation was concerned about the cholera outbreak in Nigeria.

According to her, Gavi is ready to support the country in its response to the epidemic.

Dr. Nishtar stated: “Deeply concerned about the ongoing #cholera outbreak in Nigeria. @Gavi and partners are closely monitoring the cholera outbreak, and stand ready to support the government to quickly respond, including to request emergency vaccine doses where needed.

“The global cholera stockpile, which is funded by Gavi, is currently fully replenished and ready to help contain outbreaks and protect those at highest risk.”

As part of efforts at containing the situation, the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), Monday this week, said it had activated the Emergency Operation Centre (EOC) to contain the gravity of the situation in the country, report noted.

Dr. Jide Idris, Director-General of the NCDC, said the EOC would serve as the nerve centre for the coordination of response across the country.

The NCDC Chief noted that the EOC would support affected about 32 affected states of the Federation, and facilitate rapid communication, data analysis, and decision-making processes.

Idris said: “It will ensure efficient deployment of needed resources, strengthen surveillance and diagnostic capacity and capabilities, enhance case management, training and intensify public awareness and community engagement activities.”

He further noted that experts who conducted the recent risk assessment placed Nigeria at high risk of increased cholera transmission and impact.

Meanwhile, Prof. Muhammad Ali Pate, Coordinating Minister of Health and Social Welfare, has called for a multi-sectorial approach to forestall outbreaks of infectious diseases, such as cholera, typhoid fever and tuberculosis.

The Minister, who said this while featuring on a Channels TV programme Wednesday, June 26, posited that the approach should not only be biomedical which is curative, noting that many diseases are socially determined, hence, the right public policies must be put in place to provide social safety nets for vulnerable and poor people.

He also explained: “There are many diseases that are socially determined; they are diseases of largely the population that are vulnerable and poor who live in inadequate housing, with low sanitation, who don’t have enough food, who are malnourished or whose occupation exposes them to certain disease conditions.

“So, to address population health, there is the biomedical which are certain diseases that we handle but there are some that go beyond that, and are multi-sectorial in terms of the determinant of why those diseases occur and how to respond to them.”

Pate stated: “At the end of the day, we need to grow our economy; we need to translate that growth into incomes for households, we need to also build infrastructure.

“The base for the urbanisation that we are seeing so that people will have good housing, good nutrition, safe spaces, proper mental health, in addition to access to health facilities they can afford to get proper mental services.”

The Minister said: “So, health is one thing that is not just a biomedical issue; there is health in almost all public policies, whether it is on housing, transportation, agriculture, environment, youths, even the gender dimension of it to ensure the women are not left behind, and there are vulnerabilities that will have to be addressed through social protection mechanism to ensure that there are safety nets for those who are left behind.

“It’s a whole of government and whole of society efforts that are necessary to improve the health and wellbeing of any population.”

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