COVID-19: Nigeria strengthens surveillance to curb spread – WHO



World Health Organisation (WHO) says that Nigeria as one of the African countries with high number of COVID-19 cases, is strengthening surveillance to help stem the spread of the virus.

WHO Nigeria stated this on the WHO Regional Office for Africa located in Brazzaville, Congo, official Twitter account @WHOAFRO on Saturday.

It stated that “Lagos State accounts for almost half of Nigeria’s infections, WHO is supporting health authorities by mobilising surveillance teams to help investigate and trace patients presenting COVID-19 symptoms at healthcare facilities.

“They dig through hospital records everyday looking for patients who may be showing COVID-19 symptoms who may have been missed by hospital staff.

“Officials are deployed in the 37 localities of Lagos State, who act as fresh eyes in medical centres and alert the state COVID-19 investigation teams once a case is identified.

“In Lagos State, 1,408 health facilities are covered by the surveillance officers, where a total of 720 health workers were infected by July 21, 2020.

According to WHO, Lagos State authorities say they are determined to safeguard the lives of healthcare workers who risk getting infected in the line of duty.

It noted that Gov. Babajide Sanwo-Olu had announced that a COVID-19 allowance would be made available to emergency healthcare workers in the state.

“The governor also said that health and life insurance had been procured for health workers.”

Meanwhile, the WHO Regional Office for Africa, said there are over one million confirmed COVID-19 cases in Africa.

The office stated this on its dashboard that “there are over one million confirmed COVID-19 cases on the African continent with more than 690,000 recoveries and more than 22,000 deaths cumulatively.”

It stated that South Africa had 538,184 cases and 9,604 deaths, followed by Nigeria with 45,244 confirmed cases and 930 deaths, while Ghana had 39,642 confirmed cases and 199 deaths.

It added that Seychelles, Eritrea and Mauritius were countries currently with the lowest confirmed cases in the region.

The office said that Seychelles had 114 confirmed cases with zero death, Eritrea; 282 confirmed cases with zero death, Mauritius had 344 reported cases with 10 deaths.

The WHO Regional Director for Africa, Dr Matshidiso [email protected], in her tweets on Friday said Africa crossed an important threshold – one million COVID-19 cases on the continent.

“More cases are detected beyond major cities, WHO is supporting countries to decentralise testing, tracing, isolation and treatment,” she said.


Edited By: Abiodun Esan/Hadiza Mohammed-Aliyu (NAN)

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