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Back To Vidyya Meningitis Outbreak Kills More Than 150 Nigerians

Death Rate Highest Among Children Under The Age Of Six

A government spokesman for Nigeria's northern Katsina State Monday announced that an outbreak of cerebrospinal meningitis (CSM) in the state had killed some 40 children while dozens of others have been hospitalized.

"In the past two weeks, there have been reports of a CSM outbreak in the state especially in the eastern part which has so far claimed about 40 victims who are all children below the age of six," said Ibrahim Abdullahi, the spokesman.

The state government has obtained vaccines for a mass immunization program and is conducting an awareness campaign on how to prevent the disease from spreading, added the official.

The death toll in Katsina brings to a number of more than 150 people killed by the CSM in several northern and central states in the past three weeks, according to reports.

The disease broke out early last month in the northern states of Sokoto and Taraba, where at least 35 people have died and more than 100 others contracted meningitis.

The CSM, which causes inflammation of the brain's membrane, often spread in poorly-ventilated homes where people sleep at night with doors and windows firmly shut during the dry and hot seasons.

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Editor: Susan K. Boyer, RN
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