Infectious disease outbreak preparedness and response in Nigeria: history, limitations and recommendations for global health policy and practice

Testimony J. Olumade, Oluwafolajimi A. Adesanya, Iyanuoluwa J. Fred-Akintunwa, David O. Babalola, Judith U. Oguzie, Olusola A. Ogunsanya, Uwem E. George, Oluwawapelumi D. Akin-Ajani, Damilola G. Osasona

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations

Abstract

Effective disease outbreak response has historically been a challenging accomplishment for the Nigerian health system due to an array of hurdles not unique to Nigeria but also found in other African nations which share its large size and complexity. However, the efficiency of the response mounted against the Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) outbreak of 2014 proved that indeed, though challenging, proactive and effective outbreak response is not impossible. With over 20 public health emergencies and infectious disease outbreaks between 2016 and 2018 alone, Nigeria is one of only five members of the World Health Organization (WHO) African Region to report five or more public health events per annum. There are many lessons that can be drawn from Nigeria’s experience in handling outbreaks of infectious diseases. In this review, we discuss the history of emerging and re-emerging infectious disease outbreaks in Nigeria and explore the response strategies mounted towards each. We also highlight the significant successes and note-worthy limitations, which we have then utilized to proffer policy recommendations to strengthen the Nigerian public health emergency response systems.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)736-757
Number of pages22
JournalAIMS Public Health
Volume7
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - 2020
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • global health policy
  • infectious diseases
  • Nigeria
  • outbreak preparedness
  • outbreak response

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Informatics
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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