Abuja — The Federal Government yesterday refuted the rumour that public hospitals have ran out of anti-snake venom for treatment of snake bite patients.
The rebuttal was in a statement made available to LEADERSHIP, following reports of deaths of 91 persons as a result of snake bite in Gombe and Plateau States within three weeks.
The Minister of Health, Prof Isaac Adewole said the Ministry still has some vials of Anti-snake venom stocked in the Federal Ministry of Health, from the 2016 procurement from which states and other treatment centres were supplied upon request.
According to him, "the states in question, have refused to comply with the new procedure of request, hence their inability to access the product from the ministry".
The statement also noted that, 5 states have so far made request and have been issued for the treatment of victims in the last 4 months, the last was in September 6, 2017.
The Health Minister also called on snake bite prevalent states to invest in procurement of anti-snake venom for their people.
He warned that Federal Government cannot continue to procure and distribute free to states indefinitely as being currently practiced.
"The Federal Government is however working on Public Private Partnership arrangement for local production of anti-snake bite venom which will make the product available affordable and accessible", he added.