Nigeria has recorded its second case of the deadly Coronavirus.
The Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire, has announced a second confirmed case of Coronavirus in Nigeria.
Dr. Ehanire who made this known Monday in Benin during a press briefing reiterated that the newly confirmed case is not a new importation, but a contact of the index case, the Italian, who has since been in isolation and was under clinical follow up.
According to him, “A total of 217 contacts were linked to the index case. Of the 217, 45 travelled out of Nigeria and 172 contacts are presently in Nigeria. Of the 172 contacts currently in Nigeria, 69 are in Lagos, 40 in Ogun and 52 in other States, with 11 in unknown locations.
“Nevertheless, the Federal Ministry of Health, following best practice, decided to test these persons for possible presence of coronavirus in their systems. On 8th March 2020, scientists confirmed the presence of coronavirus in one of the contacts.
“It is my duty therefore to announce a new case of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Nigeria. The newly confirmed case is an Ogun State contact of the index case, but he has no significant clinical symptoms. Thus brings the total number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Nigeria today to two”.
He explained that since the beginning of the outbreak in China and subsequent spread to other countries, one of the important response strategies at the containment stage, has been to identify all contacts, ensure their strict isolation and to follow up daily with checks for any symptoms of the disease.
“A team of researchers from various institutions in Nigeria, including scientists from the Centre for Human and Zoology Virology in LUTH, African Centre for Genomics of Infectious Diseases in Redeemers University and the Nigeria institute of Medical Research (NIMR) Lagos, combined their efforts to successfully perform the genome sequencing of the coronavirus strain that the index case brought to Nigeria and proved it to be a match with the virus circulating in Italy and Wuhan.
“This was coordinated by the Lagos State Ministry of Health and NCDC. It is the first time the sequencing of this virus has been performed in Africa. The result has been shared with International Authorities and the Director General of the World Health Organization has extended congratulations to Nigerian scientists for this achievement.
“The contact tracing and monitoring in respect of the coronavirus index case presently receiving treatment in Lagos, has been diligently and conscientiously pursued since 27 February when the case was first diagnosed.
“Following recent experience from other countries and evidence from newly published studies on non-symptomatic infections, the Nigeria Center for Disease Control, NCDC, advised that samples should be taken from all contacts of the index case for testing. It is in this process that this new case was detected.
“I repeat that the newly confirmed case in Nigeria is not a new importation, but a contact of the index case, who has since been in isolation and was under clinical follow up. He presently does not have any clinical symptoms, is comfortable and in care at Infectious Disease Hospital, Lagos.
“Recent studies in China have shown that increased surveillance, contact tracing and isolation reduces the risk of spread, because further opportunities for transmission of the virus by the infected patient in the community are limited.
“All other contacts of the index case in Ogun and Lagos will remain in isolation and testing will be carried out on those not yet tested, including some in other states,” he said.
Enahire further added: “On the use reported in the US of Nigerian origin, we are in touch with colleagues at the US Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta and her in Abuja. The case visited Lagos in February 2020. However, given the timelines between the time he was in Nigeria briefly and when he became ill, the likelihood that he was infected in Lagos is very low.
“The Federal Ministry of Heath, and Lagos and Ogun States Health Ministries assure citizens of our commitment to do all need to control spread of this outbreak. Since the first case was confirmed in Nigeria on 27th of February 2020, the National Emergency Operations Centres (EOC) in Abuja continues to work closely with Lagos and Ogun State EOCs to coordinate response activities
“I again strongly advise against spreading misinformation to cause fear and panic. The Federal Ministry of Health and NCDC will continue to provide prompt and reliable updates and initiate all measures required to protect our people.
“A globally emerging lesson here is that some people who contracted COVID-19 appear to experience zero or only mild illness and will recover; however, other patients develop more severe symptoms, especially if they have other underlying Illnesses, are weakened by old age.”
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