…As Minister says Rwanda uses robots to protect doctors working with COVID-19 patients***
The COVID-19 pandemic may truly be waning as the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), Thursday night confirmed only 354 new cases of infections in the country, bringing the total number of COVID-19 infections to 45,244.
The NCDC made this known on its official twitter handle on Thursday, noting also, that only three more persons had died from the disease.
According to NCDC, 45,244 cases had been confirmed, 32,430 cases discharged and 930 deaths had been recorded in 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory till date.
It stated that the 354 new cases were reported from 17 states- FCT (78), Lagos (76), Kaduna (23), Ebonyi (19), Oyo (18), Nasarawa (17), Rivers (17), Delta (16), Kwara (15), Akwa Ibom (13), Edo (12), Ogun (12), Plateau (11), Kano (9), Bauchi (6), Borno (6), and Ekiti (6).
The NCDC said that a multi-sectoral national Emergency Operations Centre (EOC), activated at Level 3, had continued to coordinate the national response activities in the country.
The NCDC had said that the public health response in the country was being strengthened to address the coronavirus.
Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu, Director General of NCDC, at the Presidential Taskforce (PTF) briefing on Thursday, said this was part of the focus of the just-concluded National Council on Health meeting presided over by the Minister of Health and attended by state Health Commissioners.
Responding to a question on the ability of the NCDC to carry out effective contact tracing now that the virus was at the community transmission stage, Ihekweazu said:
“Yes, it is harder when we have community transmission but not impossible, it just means we have to deploy all resources collectively.
“At the moment, for instance, NCDC still has a team of about 40 people supporting Lagos State alone.
”That is because we recognise the size of the challenge. A third of all the cases in Nigeria is still reported in Lagos, even though, cases are declining over the last few weeks.
“Until we have a vaccine, there won’t be a point where we would say, ‘let’s relax.’ That is really out of the question.”
In another development, the Rwanda Health Minister, Daniel Ngamije said on Thursday that Rwanda now uses robots, to protect doctors, who treat COVID-19 patients, through minimising contact.
Ngamije said this at a news conference in Moscow.
“We have some health personnel who have been infected with COVID-19.
“I think there are less than 10 because we deployed all the Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) measures and different measures were taken to avoid that health personnel be contaminated with this disease.
“We also use robots to reduce contact of health personnel with patients, those robots are helping us to collect some information, temperature and other information, treatment standards.
“So, basically we do not have a big issue of health personnel affected by COVID-19 so far,” Ngamije said.
World Health Organisation (WHO) Regional Director for Africa Matshidiso Moeti added that around 35,000 health care workers were infected with COVID-19 in Africa, most of them (24,000) in South Africa.
Moeti also said that the WHO was deploying more than 40 regional experts to South Africa to provide assistance.
According to Moeti, Africa has recorded slightly less than 1 million COVID-19 cases so far and over 20,000 people on the continent have lost their lives due to the virus.
Additional reports from Sputnik