Health Minister approves production of newborn antiseptic gel by Nigerian company

Chlorhexidine gel is a high impact, low-cost medicine that prevents umbilical cord infections in newborns.

The Minister of Health, Onyebuchi Chukwu, on Tuesday in Bauchi granted regulatory approval for the production of newborn cord care antiseptic gel, Chlorhexidine Digluconate 7.1%, by a Nigerian pharmaceutical company, Drugfield Pharmaceuticals Ltd.

The company thus becomes the first Nigerian and African company to manufacture the crucial baby product.
This was made known in a statement released by the Senior Adviser, Knowledge and Communication,  USAID/Targeted States High Impact Project (TSHIP), Dagang Gang.

Chlorhexidine gel is a high impact, low-cost medicine that prevents umbilical cord infections in newborns.

Mr. Gang said the minister at the Bauchi State Health Council called on all states across Nigeria to invest in the use of Chlohexidine gel and other lifesaving medicines recommended by the United Nation Commission.

About 30 per cent of newborn deaths in Nigeria are attributable to infections; and this is an obstacle to the attainment of the United Nations MDGs by 2015.

A recent report by Save the Children, a nongovernmental organization shows that 2.9 million babies died within 28 days after delivery in 2012.

These newborn deaths arise from cases of premature birth, complications during birth, and infections.


SGF Campaign AD

The report also noted that 950, 000 newborn deaths can be prevented every year if essential health services were more equitably distributed. According to the report, this will cause a reduction in newborn mortality by 38 per cent.

The use of Chlorhexidine in Nigeria was pioneered by Sokoto State in April 2013, alongside the use of Misoprostol another lifesaving commodity for the prevention of post-partum haemorrhage, PPH, in women during child delivery.

The then Minister of State for Health, Muhammad Pate, applauding the Sokoto State Government’s initiative, also called on other state governments to take a cue from the state.

Also, Chief of Party, USAID/ TSHIP, Nosa Orobaton, commended the health minister, the Nigerian government and their private partners for their effort in preventing newborn death in Nigeria.

“We congratulate the Honourable Minister for the focused leadership leading to local production of Chlorhexidine. We praise the focused partnership of government, private sector and Sokoto State communities. With nationwide use, Nigeria has a good chance to dramatically cut preventable newborn deaths ahead of the UN MDG 2105,” Mr. Orobaton said.

Support PREMIUM TIMES' journalism of integrity and credibility

Good journalism costs a lot of money. Yet only good journalism can ensure the possibility of a good society, an accountable democracy, and a transparent government.

For continued free access to the best investigative journalism in the country we ask you to consider making a modest support to this noble endeavour.

By contributing to PREMIUM TIMES, you are helping to sustain a journalism of relevance and ensuring it remains free and available to all.


NEVER MISS A THING AGAIN! Subscribe to our newsletter

* indicates required


Now available on

  Premium Times Android mobile applicationPremium Times iOS mobile applicationPremium Times blackberry mobile applicationPremium Times windows mobile application

TEXT AD: This space is available for a Text_Ad.. Call Willie on +2347088095401 for more information

All rights reserved. This material and any other material on this platform may not be reproduced, published, broadcast, written or distributed in full or in part, without written permission from PREMIUM TIMES.