Childhood diseases will surge if looted vaccines are not returned – NMA warns

The Nigerian Medical Association has condemned the widespread attack on health facilities and the looting of medical consumables across Nigeria.

The association said it is painfully disturbed by attacks on health facilities, burning of hospitals and clinics as well as looting and vandalization of medical and hospital supplies, consumables and vaccines.

The medical body described the activities of hoodlums as barbaric, primitive and wanton, a situation it warned is capable of endangering the health of Nigerians and creating an irredeemable negative impact on the health system.

‘‘One of the immediate effects of this unbecoming behaviour of the hoodlums is the danger the public is exposed to. This may have long life effects not only on human beings but also on the environment’’.

‘‘NMA feels very embarrassed and disappointed that health workers, facilities and equipment were not secured nor protected by Security Agencies to forestall the monumental nationwide looting and vandalisation of government and private properties’’

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The NMA said the looting of health facilities will further weaken the delivery of health services in an already near-comatose health system and set Nigeria back on its quest to achieve Universal Health Coverage (UHC).

‘‘The vaccines carted away are to help prevent diseases but the action of the hoodlums may lead to the resurgence of vaccine-preventable childhood diseases.

The body has now called on looters of medicaments and hospital equipment to return them or destroy them professionally as some of the medicines could be very harmful to the human body.

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