The House of Representatives has urged the Federal Ministry of Health and Nigeria Centre for Disease Control to arrest the outbreak of diphtheria in the country.
This followed the adoption of a motion moved by Rep. Muktar Shagaya (APC-Kwara) during plenary on Thursday in Abuja.
Experts say Diphtheria is a severe infection usually caused by a bacteria known as Corynebacterium diphtheria.
It leads to breathing difficulty, irregular heartbeat and in some cases, fatalities,
Recall that the Director of Public Health, FCTA, Dr. Sadiq Abdulraman, announced the outbreak of diphtheria within the FCT.
He called on residents of the FCT to immediately take the vaccine (Pentavalent vaccine) to break the spread of the disease, which he explained is an infection of the nose and throat, adding that it is easily preventable by the vaccine.
According to the director, results of samples taken from suspected cases in a village close to Dei-Dei community, have established the breakout.
In his motion, Shagaya said that 36 states of the federation and the FCT had witnessed 555 cases of the disease in recent times as confirmed by a World Health Organisation report.
He said since the outbreak of the disease, no fewer than 75 deaths had been recorded in 21 States.
Shagaya said the cases of diphtheria were underreported by the media in spite of its looming threat to public health.
The senator noted that the disease is highly contagious though vaccine-preventable, adding that concerted efforts by relevant bodies would subdue it.
The House urged the Federal Ministry of Health, the National Primary Healthcare Development Agency and the NCDC to intensify their sensitisation and enlightenment campaign about the disease.