The Nigeria government has confirmed one case of the Conronavirus in the country a cases of an Italian, according to the Federal ministry of health. It marks the third confirmed case in Africa.
“we have been beefing up our preparedness capabilities since the first confirmation of cases in China, and we will use all the resources made available by the government to respond to this case,” Osagie Ehanire, Minister of Health assures all Nigerians.
The case confirmed was an Italian citizen by the Virology Laboratory of the Lagos University Teaching Hospital, part of the Laboratory Network of the Nigerian Centre for Disease Control states that the patient is clinically stable, with no serious symptoms, and is being managed at the Infectious Disease Hospital in Yaba, Lagos.
Earlier, the World Health Organisation (WHO) had identified Nigeria to have higher risk for coronavirus. The virus has affected more than 82, 294 confirmed cases globally.
However, the Government of Nigeria, through the Federal Ministry of Health has been strengthening measures to ensure an outbreak in Nigeria is controlled and contained quickly.
The multi-sectoral Coronavirus Preparedness Group led by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has immediately activated its national Emergency Operations Centre and will work closely with Lagos State Health authorities to respond to this case and implement firm control measures.
According to the minister, Nigeria already started working to identify all the contacts of the patient, since he entered Nigeria.
“Please be reminded that most people who become infected may experience only mild illness and recover easily, but it can be more severe in others, particularly the elderly and persons with other underlying chronic illnesses.”
The minister warns that all Nigerians should take care of their health and maintain hand and respiratory hygiene to protect themselves and others, including their own families, following the precautions below:
Regularly and thoroughly wash your hands with soap and water, and use alcohol-based hand sanitiser.
Maintain at least 1 & half metres (5 feet) distance between yourself and anyone who is coughing or sneezing.
Persons with persistent cough or sneezing should stay home or keep a social distance, but not mix in crowd.
Make sure you and people around you, follow good respiratory hygiene, meaning cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or into your sleeve at the bent elbow or tissue when you cough or sneeze. Then dispose of the used tissue immediately.
Stay home if you feel unwell with symptoms like fever, cough and difficulty in breathing. Please call NCDC toll free number which is available day and night, for guidance- 0800-970000-10. Do not engage in self-medication
Stay informed on the latest developments about COVID-19 through official channels on TV and Radio, including the Lagos State Ministry of Health, NCDC and Federal Ministry of Health.
Citizens must not abuse social media and indulge in spreading misinformation that causes fear and panic. The Federal Ministry of Health, through Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, will continue to provide updates and will initiate all measures required to prevent the spread of any outbreak in Nigeria.