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Ministers declare polio outbreak in Nigeria public health emergency

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Ministers of Health of the Member States of the Lake Chad Basin have declared the recent polio outbreak in Nigeria as a public health emergency not only for Nigeria but for all the countries of Lake Chad Basin.

Considering the challenging security situation in the region, the ministers solicited the support of the multi-national military task force to provide adequate security, safety and facilitation for the vaccination process.

In a document signed by the ministers of health from the Lake Chad Basin which comprises Nigeria, Niger, Chad, Central Africa Republic and Cameroon during the 66th session of the World Health Organisation Regional Committee for the African Region, in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, the ministers requested Nigeria and other member states to fully implement coordinated response to the outbreak in order to quickly prevent the spread of the disease to other countries.

They expressed the need to extend support to the response by including political advocacy and community engagement at all levels as this will lead to a successful coordination and implementation of harmonised polio vaccination activities across the countries of the Lake Chad sub-region.

Member states were also urged to provide additional political, financial and technical support for the regional emergency response.They called on World Health Organisation (WHO), Regional Director and other partners to continue with technical and financial support to accelerate eradication of poliomyelitis in the region.


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