17th March 2020- Third case of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) confirmed in Nigeria

Tuesday, March 17, 2020

The Federal Ministry of Health has confirmed a new case of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Nigeria. This case was confirmed on the 16th of March in Lagos State. This brings the total number of confirmed cases in Nigeria to 3.

The new case is a Nigerian national who returned to Nigeria from the United Kingdom on the 13th of March after a brief visit. On return to Nigeria, the case decided to go into self-isolation and subsequently developed symptoms. At which point, the case called the NCDC toll-free line to report symptoms. Officials from the Lagos State COVID-19 Emergency Operations Centre were dispatched to the case’s home to collect a sample. This was tested and positive for COVID-19. The case is currently being treated at the Infectious Disease Hospital (IDH) in Yaba, Lagos. She is clinically stable and is responding to treatment.

Contact tracing has started to identify all persons who the patient has been in contact with, since her return to Nigeria. The Federal Government of Nigeria will continue to assess the situation and review the national response accordingly. We are immediately announcing the following interventions:

(1) We strongly discourage any travel to all affected countries except for essential trips

(2) We encourage everyone returning to Nigeria from any country to self-isolate for 14-days

(3) All those returning from countries where there is ongoing high community transmission (over 1,000 cases cumulatively), should self-isolate and will be actively followed up for 14 days by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control and Port Health Services

(4) Please continue to maintain hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette

The Federal Government of Nigeria through the Federal Ministry of Health continues to carry out daily risk assessments of the COVID19 situation. The National Emergency Operations Centre led by NCDC and supported partners, will continue to support the Lagos State Ministry of Health in its response.

All Nigerians are asked to continue to take all necessary precautions to protect themselves and their families. These measures include taking the following precautions below:

(1) Wash hands regularly with soap and water or use an alcohol-based sanitiser if no water and soap is available

(2) Maintain at least 2 metres (5 feet) distance between yourself and anyone who is coughing or sneezing

(3) Persons with a persistent cough or sneezing, should stay at home until they recover

(4) Make sure you and people around you, follow good respiratory hygiene, with means covering your mouth and nose with a tissue. If none is available, you can cough into the sleeve of your bent envelope. If using a tissue when you cough or sneeze, dispose of the used tissue properly, into a dustbin

(5) Stay at home if you feel unwell with symptoms like fever, cough and difficulty in breathing and please call NCDCs toll free number 0800 970 000 0010, which is available 24 hours a day, Monday to Sunday for guidance. Do not self-medicate

(6) Stay informed on the latest developments about COVID-19 through the official Federal Ministry of Health, Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, Lagos State Ministry of Health and other State health department official channels on TV, radio and social media.

Citizens must not abuse social media or spread misinformation or disinformation that can cause fear and panic. The Federal Ministry of Health through the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control will continue to provide updates as and when they become available, and will put in place all available measures required to control the spread of any infectious disease outbreak in Nigeria.

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