Coronavirus: Isolation centres to be sited in FCT, seven states – NCDC
The National Centre for Disease Control said isolation facilities for coronavirus would be sited in the Federal Capital Territory and seven states across the country.
The World Health Organisation on January 30, 2020, declared coronavirus outbreak a Public Health Emergency of International Concern. It was first reported in Wuhan, China but the virus has since spread to countries in the Asian region, United Kingdom and the United States with some countries placing travelling restriction on travellers from China.
Nigeria is yet to have any case of the virus but the Federal Government through the Ministry of Health and NCDC are making preparations against possible transmission of the virus to Nigeria.
In a statement on the centre’s website, it said, “NCDC is currently preparing treatment and isolation facilities in the Federal Capital Territory and seven other priority states in Nigeria. They are Lagos, Akwa-Ibom, Rivers, Enugu, Delta, Cross River, and Kano State.
On the risk of the virus coming to Nigeria, NCDC said, “The risk assessment conducted by WHO places the country at High Risk, meaning that there is a high chance of an infected person (traveller) coming into Nigeria. Till date, there is no confirmed case of the novel coronavirus in Nigeria.
“The Nigerian government is closely monitoring the ongoing novel coronavirus 2019 outbreak which originated in Wuhan, China. A multi-sectoral Coronavirus Preparedness Group has been established at the NCDC. The Coronavirus Preparedness Group meets daily to carry out regular epidemic intelligence gathering.
“The Port Health Services Division of the Department of Public Health has heightened screening at the ports of entry, especially for travellers with a travel history to China. The NCDC has established a standard case definition for novel coronavirus and circulated it to State Ministries of Health, health facilities and all relevant stakeholders to guide detection and response.”
The centre also reiterated that the National Reference Laboratory had the capacity to diagnose the virus while warning health officials to call 07032864444 for sample transportation and related advice if they had a case that corresponded with the case-definition.
It added that although the World Health Organization had not placed any travel or trade restriction on China, it was adviseable that only essential travel should be made at this period of the outbreak.
Written by Olufemi Atoyebi, Abuja, published on Punch Newspapers