By Asma’u Ahmad
The Sokoto State Government said the death toll as a result of the meningitis epidemic in the state has now risen to 21. The state Commissioner for Health, Dr. Balarabe Kakale, confirmed this in an interview with newsmen in Sokoto on Sunday.
“The deaths were recorded in the seven local government areas of Kebbe, Bodinga, Rabah, Wamakko, Gada, Dange/Shuni and Tureta, which are area mostly affected by the meningitis outbreak,” he said.
Dr. Kakale said the state government had since Monday deployed no fewer than fifteen medical teams, comprising of over one hundred and fifty medical personnel. He said: “They were deployed across the 23 local governments of the state, fully equipped with ambulances and provided with free drugs,as well as medicament. The emergency response teams were conducting house to house search, definition and management, both at home and the hospitals.
“They had 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 fourteen deaths excluded the seven deaths earlier recorded in parts of Gada local government of Gada local government.”
Kakale further noted that thousands of other cases were treated at the Primary Health Centres in the local governments. The commissioner said there were some imported cases from Koko in Kebbi State, which compounded the epidemic.