The Federal Government has revealed its intention to inaugurate a national reference laboratory in Abuja in less than six months.
The laboratory will aid to reduce the logistics challenge with sample transportation to WHO reference laboratory in Dakar, Senegal.
Dr Faisal Shuaib, Executive Director, National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA), made the disclosure to newsmen on Monday in Abuja.
Shuaib said the briefing was on the Elimination of Yellow Epidemics (EYE) Strategy, 2018 Yellow Fever Vaccination Campaign following suspected outbreak of yellow fever in Edo State.
“This will ultimately reduce the response time and consequently, the morbidity and mortality rate associated with yellow fever and some haemorrhagic fevers,” he said.
Shuaib added that the report from Edo about a fever of unknown origin was also being investigated.
According to him, tests done at laboratories in Nigeria have shown that nine of the samples tested positive for Yellow Fever, as such samples have been forwarded to Dakar, Senegal for confirmation.
“We will like to assure the general public that all the agencies involved are working swiftly to contain the spread and prevent further outbreaks,” he added.
Shuaib said Nigerian government, through NPHCDA and partners, were fully committed to the implementation of the Elimination of Yellow Fever Epidemics strategy by 2026 to guarantee the protection and containment of yellow fever outbreaks.
He said the WHO launched the EYE strategy in Nigeria in April 2018, and it is aimed at eliminating yellow fever by 2026. The strategy also aims at building a global coalition of countries and partners to tackle the increase risk of the disease.