This weekly bulletin focuses on selected acute public health emergencies occurring in the WHO African region. WHO AFRO is currently monitoring 40 events: three Grade 3, seven Grade 2, five Grade 1, and twenty five ungraded events.
This week’s edition covers key ongoing events in the region, including the grade 3 humanitarian crises in South Sudan and Ethiopia, the grade 2 outbreak of Ebola virus disease in the Democratic Republic of Congo, and outbreaks of cholera and hepatitis E in Nigeria and Crimean-Congo haemorrhagic fever in Mauritania but detected in Senegal.
For each of these events, a brief description followed by public health measures implemented and an interpretation of the situation is provided.
A table is provided at the end of the report with information on all public health events currently being monitored in the region.
Major challenges to be addressed include:
• Trans-boundary spread of communicable diseases, calling for accelerated efforts to strengthen cross-border surveillance and collaboration in the region.
• The number of ongoing public health emergencies in the region has remained high with increasing complexity. The funding gaps are equally widening, impacting on the capacity of countries and partners to scale up response interventions.
Declaration of end of meningitis outbreak in Nigeria 23 June 2017 | Abuja
The Nigeria Federal Ministry of Health has, on 23 June 2017, officially declared the end of the 2016/2017 meningitis outbreak in the country. This declaration comes four weeks after the number of new meningitis cases reported each week fell below the epidemic and alert thresholds in all Local Government Areas. Since onset of the outbreak on 18 December 2016, a total of 14,518 suspected / confirmed cases of meningitis were reported from 25 states, with 1,166 deaths, giving a case fatality rate of 8%.
The Nigeria Ministry of Health, working together with the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), the National Primary Healthcare Development Agency (NPHCDA), WHO and other partner organisations worked assiduously to control and reduce the impact of the outbreak on affected communities. The national outbreak response was coordinated within the framework of the National Emergency Operations Centre (EOC).
WHO congratulates and commends the Government of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, the Federal and State Ministries of Health, NCDC, government agencies and the health partners for the collective efforts to control this outbreak. WHO urges the government and all the stakeholders to draw lessons from this outbreak in order to improve preparedness, prevention, early detection, and rapid control of meningitis early detection and rapid control of meningitis in the next season.