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WHO, UNICEF hold emergency meeting over cholera outbreak in Lagos

Cholera Cholera
File picture of cholera patients

The World Health Organisation (WHO), the United Nations Children’s Fund, and the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) held an emergency meeting on Tuesday over the cholera outbreak in Lagos state.

Walter Mulombo, the WHO country representative, shared details of the meeting via his X account.

“Happening Now: @WHONigeria @UNICEF_Nigeria @IOM_Nigeria hold an emergency meeting on the emerging cholera outbreak in Lagos state,” he wrote.

“The three agencies are discussing joint @UN_Nigeria support @NCDCgov @ProfAkinAbayomi.”

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As of Sunday, 15 people had died and over 60 had been hospitalised in Lagos following reports of a severe outbreak of gastroenteritis caused by cholera.

Akin Abayomi, the commissioner for health, said laboratory investigation confirmed the strain to be cholera sub-type O-1, adding that the subtype is associated with more severe diseases.

Abayomi said the identified strain is “highly aggressive and contagious, with potential for widespread dissemination”.

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He said through community-based case finding and contact tracing, the government observed that the number of cases “has peaked and is now significantly declining”.

On Monday, UNICEF had called for extensive measures to protect schoolchildren against the cholera outbreak in the country.

Celine Lafoucriere, chief of the UNICEF Lagos field office, said cholera “critically affects” children and called for efforts to prevent disruption in the academic calendar over the spread of the disease.

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