Emergencies preparedness, response

Meningococcal disease in Niger

3 March 2006

The Ministry of Health has reported a total of 614 cases and 44 deaths from 1 January to 26 February 2006. The epidemic threshold has been crossed in two neighbouring districts, Madarounfa and Guidan-Roumdji. Over 40 specimens of cerebral spinal fluid have been found positive for Neisseria meningitidis serogroup A.

Following a request from the Ministry of Health, the International Coordinating Group (ICG)on Vaccine Provision for Epidemic Meningitis Control has provided 750 000 doses of bivalent vaccine and 7800 vials of oily chloramphenicol for case management. An immunization campaign has started in both districts, with the support from international agencies and nongovernmental organizations.