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Investigation of a Suspected Malaria Outbreak in Sokoto State, Nigeria, 2016

DOI: 10.4236/oalib.1104246, PP. 1-8

Keywords: Malaria, Outbreak Investigations, Sokoto, Nigeria

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Background: Malaria, a vector borne disease that contributes to the 17 percent of the global burden of infectious diseases, is preventable, treatable and completely curable. The disease is endemic in Nigeria, staggering at 27 percent prevalence and contributes up to 29 percent of global burden of the disease. It contributes to the high child mortality in Nigeria, attributed 30 percent of under five deaths. In October 2016, WHO team in Nigeria in collaboration with Nigerian Centre for Disease Control investigated a suspected malaria outbreak in Sokoto state of northwestern Nigeria. Materials and Methods: We reviewed hospital records of 190 patients who presented to the health facility with febrile illness, investigated and treated from 3/10/2016 to 25/10/2016. Data used during the study included age, sex, residential address, signs and symptoms. A cross-sectional survey was carried out in the region of the outbreak to assess the knowledge of the community on malaria control measures. SPSS version 24 was used for the data analyses. Results: Out of the 190 cases, 168 (88.4%) tested positive for RDT and 22 (11.5%) tested negative. The age range of the cases was from three months to 70 years (median: 14 years), the sex distribution was 118 (62.1%) females and 72 (37.9%) males, and the CFR of the RDT positive cases was 2.97% (5/168) with M:F ratio of 1:4. A survey to assess the knowledge of the affected community on malaria preventive measures shows 59.5% (25/42) are aware of at least three out of four measures asked. Conclusion: Although government commitment to malaria control is commendable, this suspected outbreak has clearly brought to fore some gaps in the on-going malaria control in Sokoto state. Thus, there is a need for government to intensify health education programmes on environmental hygiene, state malaria control programme to strengthen awareness campaigns on malaria interventions as well as improve access to the available interventions especially for the more vulnerable members of the community.


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