Health authorities have declared a public health Emergency as unidentified infection hits 41 children in FCT
Health authorities in the FCT have declared a public health emergency in the settlement of Angwan Hausawa, a slum neighbourhood of Abuja Municipal Area Council after nine children died there of a yet undiagnosed disease.
At least 32 other children in the community of Damagaza are hospitalised. The World Health Organization, FCT public health department and the FCT Primary Health Care Development Board at the weekend set up camp in the community to test, treat and vaccinate children exposed. The first case, a girl aged seven years, died on June 15. Eight more children have died since then, bringing the number of infections to 41. All had fever and diarrhoea; their abdomen were distended; and their stool was mucous and greenish, said executive secretary of FCT Primary Health Development Board, Dr. Rilwanu Mohammed. Provisional diagnosis has shown the infection to be gastroenteritis or food poisoning, caused by contaminated food or water. The surrounds of Damagaza has been described as dirty with poor hygiene. Mohammed said the disease could be a result of water contamination. Residents of the community depend on stream and wells for water.