• Sunday, July 14, 2024
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Nigeria’s first Coronavirus death had underlying medical conditions


Nigeria’s first novel Coronavirus death has been reported as having underlying medical conditions. This is the first death out of 33 active cases and a total of 36 confirmed cases.

Suleiman Achimugu, 67, a former managing director of Nigeria’s Pipelines & Products Marketing Company died of the virus on Monday after returning to Nigeria following medical examinations and treatment in the United Kingdom. Although the COVID-19 infection is the immediate cause of his death, experts say he had underlying medical conditions such as multiple myeloma, diabetes and was undergoing chemotherapy.

A recent study from Italy’s national health authority says that more than 99 percent of Italy’s coronavirus fatalities were people who suffered from previous medical conditions. Nigeria has more than a thousand contacts that have not been traced.

As of 10:35 am on March 23, the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) announced the country has six new cases

A breakdown of the figure showed that two cases each were confirmed in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) and Lagos, one case was confirmed in Edo State while one death was recorded in Abuja.

On Monday, Chikwe Ihekwazu, director-general, NCDC said on national television that the country has mapped scenarios and what to do and given different stages in the management of the pandemic.

“This week is the beginning; there is no magic bullet to this, there is no quick solution. We have to work together at the federal level, with the presidential task force in place and the President has demonstrated that he is taking this very seriously.”

“I feel the best I can say is if you are a private sector practitioner, please be aware that you may be  called on to provide support in certain areas and see how we can work together to scale up care,” he urged.

According to Ihekwazu, the challenge with Nigeria’s health system and any health system is not that itcannot provide care for this illness.

“The issue is the numbers, if we have an exponential increase in numbers that overwhelms the system, then we need to call all part of the system to help very quickly and this is really where the challenge is. So what we are working very hard on is to reduce the number of new infections coming into Nigeria,” he said.

The director-general said that Nigeria does not have a large number of cases at present.

So this is what we are going to do with all care providers. We need to get the support of the private sector.

A public health expert, Oladoyin Odubanjo, says that curbing an epidemic is so much easier when people are effectively taught what they need to know.

“A worrisome dimension has been the repeated story of people not getting through to the helplines publicised. As we succeed with the public enlightenment, we must ensure that when people do as told and phone in, they must get through to someone and, that also, easily,” he said in an interview with BusinessDay.