The World Health Organisation has raised alarm that 160 million Nigerians are at risk of yellow fever.
The WHO said with Nigeria’s population of about 200 million, the figure makes up around 25 percent of all the people at risk in Africa.
The Medical Officer, WHO Nigeria, Dr. Anne Eudes Jean Baptiste, said, “Yellow fever is dangerous because a small percentage of patients will go through a more toxic phase of the disease. By then, they will experience fever, have system failure, mainly in the kidney and liver. They may experience bleeding coming from the mouth, nose and eyes and within 7 to 10 days, half of them will die.”
Sylvatic exposure is the transmission of yellow fever from mosquitos that have bitten animals and non-human primates.
The WHO also said Nigeria is at risk of both urban and sylvatic (jungle) exposure to the disease.
While workers in mining and agriculture are particularly vulnerable to this type of transmission, the global health body also said Nigeria has vaccinated over 45 million people against yellow fever during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Yellow fever is an acute viral haemorrhagic disease transmitted by infected mosquitoes.
Symptoms of yellow fever include fever, headache, jaundice, muscle pain, nausea, vomiting, and fatigue.
Nigeria has recorded no fewer than 1,005 suspected yellow fever cases so far in 2022.
The cases were reported from 36 states including the FCT in 390 Local Government Areas.
According to the Director General of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, Dr. Ifedayo Adetifa, there is a strengthened surveillance for the disease.
“We have reference laboratories in the country that have been strengthened, and are being supported and assessed to make sure they are meeting all the performance parameters in terms of sample collection and referral to our reference labs in Abuja.”