The Nigeria Center For Disease Control (NCDC) has recorded 389 new cases of COVID-19, bringing the total number of infections in the country to 12,233.
NCDC announced this through its official Twitter handle and said that as of June 6, 389 new confirmed cases from 23 states and nine deaths were recorded in the country. Recall that on Feb. 27 Nigeria confirmed its first case of COVID-19 and 100 days after, NCDC recorded 12,233 confirmed cases and 342 deaths.
The new cases took the country’s total infections to 12,233, with 3,826 patients successfully treated and discharged, and 8065 actives cases. According to NCDC, Lagos reported 66 new cases, the FCT 50, Delta 32, Oyo 31, Borno 26, Rivers 24, while Edo and Ebonyi recorded 23 new cases each.
Other states where new cases where found were Anambra (17), Gombe (17), Nasarawa (14), Imo (12), Kano (12), Sokoto (12), Jigawa (8), Ogun (7), Bauchi (5), Kebbi (2), Kaduna (2), Katsina (2), Ondo (2), Abia (1) and Niger (1). The COVID- 19 pandemic had affected over 100 countries across the world. Over 6 million people had been affected and the number of deaths had exceeded 300,000 as at June 6. As Nigeria’s Public Health Institute, NCDC said it would continue to work alongside other agencies under the supervision of the Federal Ministry of Health, (FMOH) in leading the public health response to the pandemic.
It said also that it had played a key role in the multi-sectoral response, within the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 (PTF-COVID-19) established by President Muhammadu Buhari.
“One hundred days after the first case, we remember all Nigerians who have passed away from the disease. ”We commiserate with their families and friends who have had to deal with the difficulty of losing loved ones at this time,” it said.
The agency said that to ensure a well-coordinated emergency response, it activated a level three Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) on Feb, 27. It said that prior to this, the National EOC was in alert mode; monitoring the spread in other countries, carrying out risk assessments and strengthening Nigeria’s preparedness.
During this time, the NCDC said that it developed technical guidelines, response plans and trained health workers across the country. NAN recalls that the National EOC included representatives from the FMOH, other sister agencies and partners.
Prior to the confirmation of the first case, NCDC supported four laboratories within its molecular laboratory network to activate testing for COVID-19. Since then, the number of laboratories had increased to 30, with a combined minimum capacity of 10,000 tests daily.
The Public health institute said that its goal was to expand to at least 10 more laboratories by the end of June, leveraging on Gene-Xpert capacity for Tuberculosis diagnosis.
Meanwhile, it said that the safety of health workers had been at the forefront of Nigeria’s response strategy to COVID-19. “Since the first case was confirmed, NCDC has supported the training of 13,000 health workers in infection prevention and control (IPC) as well as case management. “In collaboration with the Departments of Hospital Services and Food and Drugs of the Federal Ministry of Health, NCDC has also ensured that health workers were provided with the required personal protective equipment (PPE) to reduce the risk of health workers’ infection. “As part of its mandate, NCDC had provided support to all states in Nigeria.
Over the last three years, in preparedness for major outbreaks, the agency supported the establishment of State Public Health Emergency Operations Centres in 23 of the 36 states, without polio or public health EOCs,” it stated. The NCDC noted that the EOCs had served as the coordination hub at state level since the first case was confirmed in Nigeria.
The Nigerian public health institute said it had deployed its highest number of rapid response teams – with 37 teams across 34 states and the FCT. “The extent of this response has been supported by the deployment of additional surge teams from the Nigeria Field Epidemiology and Laboratory Training Programme (NFELTP), the World Health Organization (WHO) and Africa Centres for Disease Control (Africa CDC),” it said.
The NCDC said that it would continue to support states with medical supplies, transportation of samples, training of health workers, risk communications and other response activities.
Meanwhile, the agency also launched the #TakeResponsibility campaign during the 100 days which have formed the cornerstone of public health messaging. “This is done by leveraging on social media, mainstream media and other avenues to encourage Nigerians to take responsibility for protecting themselves and loved ones and preventing the spread of COVID-19. “Over 150 jingles currently air on radio and television, reaching communities across the country. “With the support of Nigeria’s telecommunication companies, over 100 million text messages have been sent out since February 2020 reminding Nigerians about measures that can be taken to protect themselves from COVID-19,” it stated.
The health agency said that it continued to work closely with the Federal Ministry of Information and Culture and the National Orientation Agency to educate Nigerians on how Nigerians could protect themselves against the outbreak.
It, however, announced that the key strength of the country’s response had been the strong collaboration among Federal Ministries, Departments and Agencies and with partners. “As part of the global and regional response, NCDC has received guidance and support from WHO, Africa Centres for Disease Control and the West African Health Organisation. “The response to the pandemic has not been without challenges – global competition for access to reagents and medical supplies limited the initial testing capacity of the molecular laboratories. ” Strengthening laboratory capacity nationwide and increasing access to testing is a major priority for Nigeria’s response, in the coming months, it stressed.
The NCDC said that it would continue to work with the Nigerian Institute of Medical Research, Medical Laboratory and Science Council of Nigeria and other partners to carry out laboratory-related research and validation, as Nigeria scales up its testing capacity. “Since the first confirmed case was reported one hundred days ago, several health workers have been at the forefront. “We remain grateful to State Task Forces, Emergency Operations Centres, Rapid Response Teams, laboratory scientists and all health workers who continue to work very hard for national health security,” it explained.
The health agency said that it remained committed to working under the supervision of its parent Ministry, the FMOH, and in collaboration with other Ministries, Departments and Agencies through the PTF, to scale up Nigeria’s response. “Our strategy is to ensure more people are tested, contacts are traced early to prevent further spread and confirmed cases are treated. “In the absence of a vaccine, Nigeria and the rest of the world must depend on public health, social measures and supportive management of confirmed cases. “We urge all Nigerians to take individual and collective responsibility by adhering to public health advice such as; Frequent hand hygiene through handwashing or use of alcohol-based sanitiser. “Use of face mask in public places “Observing physical distancing of at least two metres,” it said.