Meningitis infections surge in Nigeria

Meningitis infections have caused 282 deaths in Nigeria over recent weeks.

The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control reported 1,966 suspected cases of meningitis on March 30.

Aid organizations are attempting to tackle the surge in infections in Africa’s most populous country.

Fifteen out of the country’s 36 states may be infected.

“It’s very sad that we have had so many deaths and we are going to work a lot harder with states in the future to prevent them,” said Chikwo Ihekwoazu from the NCDC.

Nigeria has suffered meningitis cases intermittently.

“So we don’t have a lot in our hospital to say, oh we have an outbreak. We have had cases of children being treated for meningitis but we don’t have an outbreak so far, but we are on the lookout for it,” said Dr. Nwajobi Princewill.

The worst outbreak was in 2009 when more than 2,000 people died from the disease.

Basic health care is limited in rural parts of the country.

Meningitis is the inflammation of tissue surrounding the brain and spinal cord.

It is caused by viral or bacterial infection and can spread in close living quarters.

It is mainly spread through kisses, sneezes, coughs.