Although the full and accurate extent of the food-borne illness burden in Nigeria is largely unknown, what is known is that the WHO estimated that there are 200,000 deaths from diarrhea every year in Nigeria of which as many as 70% is attributed to contaminated food and water. There is a general consensus amongst public health experts that figures like this are just the tip of the clinical iceberg and that the actual number of cases are expected to far exceed the figure given due to lack of adequate monitoring and evaluation mechanism of food borne illness occurrences in the country and also because of underreporting, since a large number of food-borne illnesses are clinically mild and are less likely to be reported and also due to prevalent religious and superstitious beliefs that attributes food-borne illnesses to supernatural causes like witchcraft etc.
This blog is expected to be a means of increasing the awareness about the largely ignored burden that food-borne illness places on the public health system in this country.
Comments, feedback and contributions are welcome.
Founder, Food-Borne Illness Prevention Initiative