UNICEF, ICR inaugurate diphtheria isolation centre in Yobe
By Njadvara Musa, Damaturu
The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) in partnership with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICR) has inaugurated the Diphtheria isolation centre in Yobe state.
The centre located at the Specialist Hospital, Potiskum, was to contain and treat other infectious diseases, including diphtheria that has claimed 26 lives of children in July.
Inaugurating the health facility, yesterday (Wednesday), in Potiskum, Seniour Special Assistant to the Governor on Health, Dr. Mohammed Lawan Gana, disclosed: “The equipped isolation centre was renovated by UNICEF in collaboration with ICR,” stating that the new health facility could admit patients with various infectious diseases, including child-killer diseases.
He, however, noted that there was a decline in the outbreaks of diphtheria across the various communities in the state.
Dr. Gana attributed it to the various interventions put in place to check further spread of diphtheria.
Besides, he added: “We’ve risked communication of activities with health teams that go from house to house in sensitizing the people on the disease.”
He said that preventive measures of availing people for massive vaccination of children were conducted last week across the state.
The UNICEF Health Officer, Ernest Okoli, noted that during the diphtheria outbreak, there was inadequate health facility to accommodate the victims of disease.
On the isolation diphtheria centre, he said; “This led us to fear for the further spread of the disease to other communities.
“We went ahead with other health partners to renovate and expand the isolation ward as an outbreak response efforts,” he said.
Other health delivery support to the State government include the distribution of drugs and hospital consumables to health facilities.