Nigeria, the most populated African country has recorded its first confirmed case of Coronavirus (COVID-19) on Thursday, 27th February 2020, local media reports.
Dr. Osagie Ehanire, the Federal Health Minister in a signed statement has confirmed the Nigeria has recorded her first case of the deadly virus since the outbreak.
According to the statement as reported by Nigeria Daily Post, the confirmed case is an Italian national who returned from Milan to Lagos Nigeria on 25th February 2020.
The Virology Laboratory of the Lagos University Teaching Hospital which is part of the Laboratory Network of the Nigeria Center for Disease Control (NCDC) confirmed the Italian is infected with the Coronavirus.
Currently, the patient is clinically stable with no serious symptoms and admitted at the infectious Disease Hospital in Yaba, Lagos.
The Ministry has assured it citizens all emergency centers have been activated including the multi sectoral Coronaviru Preparedness Group led by the NCC to work closely with the Lagos State Health in curbing the deadly disease
Part of the statement from the minister reads:
I wish to assure all Nigerians that have 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.
“We have 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.
‘”All Nigerians should take care of their health and maintain hand and respiratory hygiene to protect themselves and others, including their own families, by 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.”
“The Nigerian government appealed to citizens not to indulge in spreading misinformation that would cause fear and panic.”
Since the outbreak in Wuhan, China in December 2019, the deadly Coronavirus has killed over 3000 people in over 40 countries.