By Chinenye Festus:-
The Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, disclosed that it has added ThisDay Dome Treatment Centre to the list of testing centres for Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19).
The centre will be open to treatment soon. Ehanire made this known at the daily briefing of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19, on Monday in Abuja.
The minister said that Nigeria had carried out 183,294 COVID-19 tests, 28,296 of them within the week, adding that 32,558 people had been confirmed positive.
He said that the high figures within the past week, compared to that of the previous week, suggested an increase in the pace of testing and he added that the renovation of the Agura Hotel would also begin soon as an additional observation centre for Level 1 and select Level 2 cases as he hoped that these would considerably increase the capacity of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) in responding to the pandemic.
“On Saturday, we were at the Premier Medical Warehouse, Jabi, Abuja, on the invitation of the Director-General of the West African Health Organization, (WAHO), the President of the ECOWAS Commission and the German Government, to receive a donation of medical equipment and supplies to the Government and people of Nigeria, courtesy of WAHO to support our efforts in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic
.” The donations include ventilators, test kits, personal protective equipment, and face masks – all critical items in our COVID-19 response strategy.
The minister, however, said that the expected increase in positive cases would not be so dramatic if there would be better adherence by citizens to all advisories.
He also said that the COVID-19 curve would flatten if the citizens would determine to take responsibility for reducing the spread of this disease.
He said that conscientious wearing of masks was being confirmed in various studies as the easiest, cheapest, and most reliable way to check the rate of spread.
“Some countries have made it mandatory by law and imposed a fine for non-compliance. Regular washing of hands, avoiding crowds, social distancing and use of a minimum of 65 per cent alcohol-based hand sanitiser remain as relevant as at the beginning,” he said.
According to him, 13,447 COVID-19 cases have so far been successfully treated and discharged in Nigeria while 740 fatalities have been recorded.
“Our aim is to further reduce the fatalities by ensuring that those defined as vulnerable are protected with non-pharmaceutical measures and prioritised for admission to observation or treatment centres, even if they do not yet have symptoms.”
He added that news of the local development of RNA extraction kits and their validation had been relayed to him. “I am very proud of this development, which I have asked NCDC to evaluate because it will be a further step in reducing dependence on imported commodities.”
By Chinenye Festus:-