The Lagos State government has debunked insinuations that the dreaded Coronavirus had found its way into the state.
In a statement at the weekend, the government said: “The attention of Lagos State has been drawn to a story of a query suspected case coronavirus infection, which presented at a particular private hospital in Lekki, Lagos, on January 1, 2020. The subject in question is an adult male Nigerian who arrived from China four days ago. He was in Shanghai throughout his stay in China and during his stay he did not have any contact with anyone who was ill or from Wuhan region.
“On his return to Lagos, he followed the public advisory issued by Lagos State Ministry of Health. Like a responsible member of the society, he chose self-quarantine. He presented to a hospital for a check-up, just to be sure, but was found to be perfectly well and asked to return home to continue his self-quarantine. He is, therefore, clinically not a suspected case of coronavirus as he is not exhibiting any symptoms.
“As of 2:38 p.m on Saturday, the report from the epidemiology officers of the state’s Ministry of Health and the doctor that attended to him at the hospital in Lekki indicated that he is in perfect health with no symptoms of the virus…”
Nigeria, with the help of World Health Organisation (WHO), acquired in-country capacity to test for coronavirus.
Health Minister Dr Osagie Ehanire said this on Sunday in Abuja in a statement by the Head of Media and Public Relations in the ministry, Mrs Enefaa Bob-Manuel.
He said: “Such persons who develop fever, cough, sore throat or difficulty in breathing should also report to the nearest hospital for check-up.
“All healthcare workers who receive patients with symptoms like fever, cough, difficulty in breathing, are to supply them masks and isolate them.
“They should do so before contacting the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) on 07032864444.”
Also, President Muhammadu Buhari has joined other world leaders in expressing his support and good wishes to Chinese President Xi Jinping and Chinese citizens as the country battles to overcome the outbreak of Coronavirus.
The President’s solidarity message was contained in a statement on Sunday by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Malam Garba Shehu, in Abuja.
President Buhari said China had been exceptionally supportive of Nigeria and Africa, “and even more so in recent years; therefore, it is important to let China know that Nigeria and its citizens are also standing by them during this outbreak”.
The Chinese Embassy in Nigeria yesterday said 304 Coronavirus patients have died out of 14,380 cases recorded in the Asian country.
It also said 328 infected persons had been discharged from various hospitals.
Also, a 1,000-bed Huoshenshan Hospital has been built within 10 days in Wuhan, where the disease outbreak occurred.
These facts were contained in an update released on Sunday by the Press Officer in the Embassy of China in Nigeria, SUN Saixiong.
The statement said: “On the Chinese mainland, the number of confirmed cases climbed to 14,380 as of Saturday at midnight, including 304 deaths; 328 people have been released from hospitals after being cured, data released by the commission on Sunday showed.
“The number of confirmed infections in the China’s Hong Kong (14) and Macao (seven) special administrative regions and Taiwan province (10) had risen to 31.
“A total of 137,594 people, who have had close contact with infected patients, are still under medical observation, while 8,044 such people were released from observation on February 1, 2020.
Quoting Xinhua News Agency, the statement said: “A new hospital built in just 10 days in a Chinese city hit hardest by the novel coronavirus outbreak will soon start operation.
“Approved by Chairman of the Central Military Commission Xi Jinping, 1,400 medical workers from the Armed Forces are tasked with treating patients in the 1,000-bed Huoshenshan Hospital in Wuhan, starting from Monday (today).
“This is the latest development in the Chinese people’s critical battle against the novel coronavirus outbreak, with the number of cumulative confirmed cases on the Chinese mainland reaching 14,380 by the end of Saturday.
“Commanding this fight is President Xi Jinping, also General Secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee…”
The Philippines on Sunday reported the first death from coronavirus outside of China as the number of fatalities domestically reached 304.
The patient, a 44-year-old Chinese man, died on Saturday in the Philippines after being confined since January 25, Health Secretary Francisco Duque said.
The man is the companion of the first case of the virus in the Philippines, a 38-year-old Chinese woman.
“Over the course of the patient’s admission, he developed severe pneumonia,” Duque told a news conference.
“In his last few days, the patient was stable and showed signs of improvement. However, the condition of the patient deteriorated within his last 24 hours resulting in his demise,” he added.
The couple, both from Wuhan, China, arrived in the Philippines from Hong Kong on January 21.
“Naso pharyngeal or throat swabs are to be collected for testing for Coronavirus at NCDC,” he advised.
The minister also advised all those who, within 14 days of onset of illness had any one of the following exposures to report to the nearest hospital, namely history of travel to China 14 days prior to onset of symptoms, or close contact with a confirmed case of Coronavirus infection, or exposure to a healthcare facility anywhere, which is associated with coronavirus infection.
Such persons are to come forward to a hospital for testing.
He also said those with laboratory confirmation of corona 2019nCoV infection, with or without signs and symptoms of illness, should go for test.
There were 7,818 confirmed cases of coronavirus globally as at January 30, 2020, with majority in China.