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UN urges Nigeria to do more to prevent further cases of lead poisoning

BMJ 2011; 342 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.d179 (Published 11 January 2011) Cite this as: BMJ 2011;342:d179
  1. John Zarocostas
  1. 1Geneva

Nigerian authorities need to take more steps to prevent further cases of acute lead poisoning in the northern state of Zamfara, a United Nations report says. Already more than 18 000 people have been affected, and hundreds of children have died, it warns.

Investigations have shown that the cause of the high rates of death and illness among children since the beginning of 2010 was acute lead poisoning from the processing of rich lead ore for gold extraction inside houses and compounds. At least 2400 children, located in seven affected villages, needed immediate emergency treatment, the report says.

The problem was …

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