With the rise in flooding incidents across the country, Nigerians have been urged to take hygiene seriously to prevent the spread of infectious diseases which are associated with the season.
The agency in charge of disease control in Nigeria, NCDC, in an effort to reduce the spread of infectious diseases, issued some advisory guidelines for Nigerians to imbibe.
In a press statement released by the agency, it stated that flooding is an event of public health interest due to the resultant outcomes of mortality, morbidity, displacement, loss of property and livelihood.
“In addition, there is an increased risk of contamination of water supply, and contact with ‘contaminated flood’ which supports the transmission of infectious diseases and can lead to outbreaks. Flood also provides a breeding ground for disease vectors,” it stated.
Since the beginning of the raining season, Nigeria has been experiencing incessant flooding, and this got worse in July as 16 states have so far been affected resulting in the attendant loss of properties, injuries and deaths.
The Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency, NIHSA, constantly monitoring the situation has also been issuing regular flood alerts.
This year’s Annual Flood Outlook has determined that about 30 states and 100 local government areas are deemed to be high flood risk areas.
To reduce the spread of infectious diseases such as cholera, dysentery, typhoid fever and poliomyelitis; and vector-borne diseases such as malaria and yellow fever during flooding, NCDC advises eleven precautionary measures should be taken:
The eleven precautionary measures are:
1.Do not drink flood water, or use it to wash dishes, brush teeth, or wash/prepare food.
2. Communities should ensure chlorination of the public source of water supply
3. Ensure proper disposal of waste and clearing of sewage
4. Wash your hands frequently with soap and clean water
5. Discard all medicines, food and bottled water contaminated by flood water.
6. In homes, ensure water is well boiled before drinking
7. Avoid open defecation and indiscriminate refuse dumping
8. Avoid mosquito bites by using an Insecticide Treated Net
9. Ensure safe food preparation techniques
10 If you experience sudden fever or diarrhoea, please visit a health care facility immediately
11. Health workers should observe universal care precautions at all times