Just in: 40 health workers have tested positive for coronavirus in Nigeria

The Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire has disclosed that over 40 health workers have tested positive for the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Nigeria.

While speaking during a media briefing on Thursday, April 23, 2020, the minister appealed to health workers to take all necessary precautions in dealing with coronavirus patients for their own safety.

He said the government will continue to provide the necessary personal protective equipment for health workers, but that they must remain vigilant.

He said, “Please do not try to treat patients without using adequate PPE. Frontline workers must undertake refresher trainings in IPC at intervals.

“This advice is necessary due to the number of health workers who have tested positive. They are over 40 now.”

The minister said many other health workers have had to be quarantined in the past week due to exposure, and are unable to join the health sector’s efforts to fight the coronavirus disease as a result.

“I urge you all to remain vigilant in the line of duty and maintain a high index of suspicion,” he appealed.

The minister disclosed that the government has tested 9,522 samples since Nigeria’s index case was detected in February.

He said the country is currently testing an average of 600 samples a day in all 13 labs, but that operational efficiency will be improved upon to step up testing.

Ehanire also reminded Nigerians to continue to take all necessary precautions advised by authorities such as using face masks when leaving their homes, practicing hand and respiratory hygiene, observing physical distancing, and avoiding mass gatherings and non-essential travels.

“Individual actions will determine the success of the actions being taken by the government. To stop the spread of COVID-19 is therefore a collective effort,” he said,

As of April 22, Nigeria has recorded 873 coronavirus cases in 25 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja.

197 people have recovered, but 28 people have died.

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