Distribution and intensity of airborne diseases in Benue State of Nigeria
AbstractThe prevalence of airborne diseases in Benue State of Nigeria has been studied for over a period of eight years from 1993 – 2000. The study was based on a review of epidemiological data collected from clinics and hospitals in major cities of the state. Diseases prevalent include allergic asthma, pulmonary tuberculosis, pneumonia and upper respiratory tract infection (URTI). Out of the 5,431 patients treated for the diseases in the state, 257 died. Gboko, Otukpo, Katsina-Ala and Makurdi recorded the highest number with 53% of the dead caused by pneumoconiosis. The ambient air quality in the state is worse than national and international ambient air quality standards. This gives an indication of a strong correlation between the diseases and the air pollutants. The resulting impact of the diseases on the quality of life and productivity of the people is discussed. For a robust economic development and clean environment, we recommend the introduction of counseling on the prevention and control of air pollution, as well as environmental ethics, into the primary and secondary education curricula.
Keywords: airborne diseases, Benue State, Nigeria
Nigerian Journal of Physics Vol. 17, 2005: 50-56