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Gombe, Jigawa, Bauchi against air, waterborne diseases

By Grace Samuel

Three states in Northern Nigeria have activated campaign and sensitization programmes aimed at tackling airborne and waterborne diseases.

The states, which are Bauchi, Gombe and Jigawa, said the campaign was necessitated by the need to nip the disease in the bud and avoid health conditions related to it as the dry season sets in.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), explains that airborne diseases can spread through a direct or an indirect form of transmission, and that depends on the germs involved, for instance small pathogenic microbes can be transmitted from an infected person via coughing, sneezing, laughing and close personal contact.

The various airborne disease according to the CDC are; Common cold; Chickenpox, Mumps, Measles, Whooping cough, COVID-19, Aspergillosis, Tuberculosis (TB), Anthrax, Diphtheria, and Meningitis.

It was gathered that as a way of curbing the out break of the disease, the State Public Health Emergency Operation Centre (PHEOC) of Gombe state, has provided an Emergency Preparedness Plan.

The Director Medical Services in the Gombe Ministry of Health, Dr Arnold Abel, informed that the measure was necessary to protect the public against transmission of airborne infectious agents.

Abel also disclosed that the ministry is using chlorine as well as sharing aqua tabs from house to house that Fetches water from ponds or streams,” as part of measures.

He further explained that health workers were being exposed to management, case detection and treatment as measures to checkmate the disease, adding that free treatment are available in public health facilities across the state.

He said: “We have done hotspot mapping where we listed all communities at risk for waterborne diseases like cholera, and we have been disinfecting water sources every two weeks.”

Also, the Jigawa government declared thar it has put in place effective measures to stem outbreak of the diseases in the state.

Dr Ashiru Abdulrahaman who is the Coordinator, Tropical Diseases in the state Ministry of Health, said the state was conducting seasonal disease treatment in connection with the Federal Government and development partners.

“Our level of response and preparedness to outbreak of diseases is always high with support of the Federal Government and Our coordinated health ambassadors have been trained and prepared to report outbreak of any disease across the state,’’ he said.

On his part, A Water Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) expert in Bauchi State, Mr Ezekiel Sukumum advocated for provision of drinking water to curb outbreak of waterborne diseases.

He also advised the people to drink clean water to protect them from contracting preventable diseases.

“Poor access to safe drinking water leads to diseases and deaths. It is important to keep your environment clean and ensure proper waste management,” he said.

Also commenting, Dr Abdulkadeer Baba, the One-Health Focal Officer in the Bauchi State Ministry of Agriculture, called for proper management of animal waste to eradicate waterborne diseases within the states and Nigeria at large.

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