Corona Virus

Covid-19:Nigeria hits 174 confirmed cases,71% contacts traced- Ehanire

By Oluwaseun Sonde

The Honourable Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire has said that as at today, 2nd of April, 2020, Nigeria recorded 174 confirmed COVID-19 cases with 71% of the over presumed 6,000 or more contacts now traced, while number of confirmed cases will be rising dramatically.

Speaking at the press briefing in Abuja on Thursday to give the update of coronavirus Covid-19 pandemic, he said as contact tracing and testing capacity are being ramped up, more and more cases will be found and the number of new confirmed COVID-19 cases is expected to rise initially.

While giving the breakdown of the cases as its affected states, 91 are in Lagos, 35 in FCT, 14 in Osun, 8 in Oyo, 5 in Akwa Ibom, 4 each in Ogun, Edo and Kaduna, 3 in Bauchi, 2 each in Enugu and Ekiti, and 1 each in Rivers and Benue States. “Contact tracing will still be intensified to reduce the number of outstanding cases.

He said Government is worry about persons, especially Nigerians, returning to the country through land borders, who run a higher risk of infection while in a confined space for a long time, like transit in a crowded bus or car.

“Therefore, it is advisable that all travelers postpone non-essential travel, whether national, or international. In this regard, Nigerians are also advised to remain where they are resident and so stay safe, except if returning home from a journey. He added that Government shall continue to expand the number of isolation centres and prepare ICU units across the country for those who may have complications.

“We have also expanded bedding and intensive care space in Abuja, Gwagwalada and have urged all States to do the same in their states, starting with tertiary hospitals. “All facilities including private facilities where isolation and treatment of coronavirus are to be conducted, will be inspected before accreditation by a team of experts.

The Office of the National Security Adviser shall be represented, due to national security implications”, he said. He enjoined all States and facility managers to cooperate in the exercise. “because it will largely determine our success in containing the spread of the virus.

With the expanded national case definition and the addition of two laboratories to the NCDC network of COVID-19 molecular laboratories, the national testing capacity has increased. “Moreover, the lockdown in high burden States presents the advantage of reduced population mobility and leaves more people at home to be found during contact tracing.

All of this means that more people and samples can be collected and tested more quickly, giving a shorter turnaround time, but it also means that more cases will be discovered initially than before”, he said.

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