The World Health Organisation has donated 22 motorcycles to Kogi Government to strengthen disease surveillance in the 21 local government areas.
Dr Alemu Wondimagegnehu, the Country Representative of WHO, made this known at the presentation of the motorcycles at WHO Office in Lokoja on Thursday.
Wondimagegnehu said the organisation recognised surveillance as core of disease control, elimination and eradication efforts.
Represented by Kenedy Adejoh, the Country Representative said that surveillance enabled monitoring and assessment of impact strategies, and served as early warning system for impending public health emergencies.
He said: “Today, with support from donors, WHO is pleased to make a donation toward the state’s efforts to further enhance surveillance, build a highly sensitive and robust system to rapidly respond to diseases.
“Disease Surveillance and Notification Officers play major role in active surveillance through visit to community health facilities and linking with key community informants.
“The 21 DSNOs across the 21 local government areas of Kogi serve almost 4.5 million people, especially highly vulnerable population from acquiring infectious diseases and facing events of public health importance.”
He, therefore, urged the state government to ensure that the motorcycles were put to good use by the surveillance officers and be properly maintained.
The Commissioner for Health, Dr Saka Audu, thanked WHO for the gesture, saying it would go a long way in strengthening disease surveillance, particularly active case search.
Audu also commended WHO for its supportive role in immunisation and capacity building for the state’s health workers.
He said surveillance was important in early detection of outbreaks and prompt response.