The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has established an infectious disease treatment centre at the Federal Medical Centre (FMC), Katsina State. This is part of the agency’s support to strengthen states’ capacity to prevent, detect and respond to infectious disease outbreaks.
The fully equipped treatment centre was commissioned by the Honourable Minister of State for Health, Dr. Olorunnimbe Mamora, on the 16th of June 2021. The centre was also officially handed over to the management of FMC Katsina and the State Government.
Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, NCDC has been supporting all states across Nigeria in responding to the current pandemic and in strengthening preparedness for future outbreaks. The support from NCDC includes the establishment of public health laboratories, public health emergency operations centres and treatment centres. The treatment centre in Katsina is the fifth to be commissioned in less than one year, with 11 others at various stages of development.
At the commissioning of the treatment centre, the Director General of NCDC, Dr. Chikwe Ihekweazu said, “At NCDC, we recognise the critical importance of strengthening health security at state level. The success of our work depends on strong capacity at the sub-national level. We will continue supporting all states to ensure that we have the infrastructure and resources we need to prevent, detect and respond to future outbreaks.”
During the handover, the Honourable Minister of State for Health represented by the Chief Medical Director of the Federal Medical Centre, Gusau said, “The COVID-19 pandemic has shaken the foundations of our health, economic and social stability. However, it has also led to mammoth efforts such as the establishment of this treatment centre. By building a standard centre where infectious disease treatment can be provided, we are bringing care closer to the people, and strengthening our capacity for future outbreaks”.
Nigeria has been responding to the COVID-19 pandemic for 16 months, with over 160,000 cases and 2,117 deaths recorded. Since then, investments have been made in strengthening health security across states. In addition to the establishment of infectious disease treatment centres, molecular laboratories and PHEOCs, NCDC has led the training of over 10,000 health workers on infection prevention control, completed the digitalisation of the country’s infectious disease surveillance system, provided vehicles for outbreak investigation across states, ensured regular supplies of treatment and testing supplies amongst other activities.
With the leadership of the Federal Ministry of Health and support of partners, NCDC remains committed to providing support to states, and strengthening sub-national health security capacity in Nigeria.
The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control is the country’s national public health institute, with the mandate to lead the preparedness, detection and response to public health emergencies. The Bill for an Act to establish NCDC was signed into law in November 2018, by President Muhammadu Buhari. The mission for the NCDC is ‘To protect the health of Nigerians through evidence-based prevention, integrated disease surveillance and response, using a One Health approach, guided by research and led by skilled workforce’.
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Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu
Nigeria Centre for Disease Control