The Nigeria Center for Disease Control is aware of a suspected yellow fever outbreak in Edo State.
After reporting an outbreak of fever of unknown origin in four areas of local government in Edo State, the state's public health team began an investigation. On November 21, 2018, nine cases tested positive for yellow fever. We await confirmatory results from the WHO Regional Reference Laboratory.
The Edo State Epidemiology Team is working with the Nigeria Center for Disease Control (NCDC), the National Agency for the Development of Primary Health Care (NPHCDA) and the World Health Organization (WHO) to conduct a detailed investigation and response to cases already confirmed.
The NCDC has deployed a rapid response team to support the state with active case search, risk communications, and case management. There are ongoing plans to initiate a reactive vaccination campaign in the affected Local Government area in response to the set of cases.
The yellow fever virus is transmitted through bites of an infected mosquito. It is a completely vaccine-preventable disease and a single shot provides lifelong immunity. The yellow fever vaccine is available free of charge to all children under one year of age as part of the routine immunization schedule at primary health care centers in Nigeria.
In addition to the vaccine, the public is advised to keep their environments clean and free of stagnant water to discourage mosquito breeding and use insecticide-treated nets, screens on windows and doors to prevent mosquito bites.
Since September 2017, Nigeria has reported suspected cases of yellow fever in all states of the country. On November 11, 140 cases were confirmed in a laboratory in Nigeria. A multi-agency Yellow Fever Emergency Operations Center was established at the NCDC to coordinate the response.
The symptoms of yellow fever include yellowing of the eyes, sudden fever, headache and pain in the body. If you experience these symptoms or notice someone in your community exhibiting them, contact your nearest health center.
This week, our sister agency NPHCDA conducted a major yellow fever vaccination campaign targeting 26 million children and adults (aged 9 months to 44 years) in six states: Niger, Plateau, Borno, Sokoto, Kebbi and FCT. One dose of the yellow fever vaccine provides protection from the disease for life. We urge all Nigerians to vaccinate themselves and encourage their families and neighbors to do the same.
The NCDC assures all Nigerians that we will continue to work with states and partners across the country to ensure that the outbreak is reduced.
Dr. Chikwe Ihekweazu
Chief Executive Officer, Nigeria Control Center for Disease Control