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Minister of Health Osagie Ehanire shares Preventive Measures for #COVID19 Fatality Rate

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Confirmed cases of coronavirus in Nigeria hit 18,480

According to the Nigeria Center for Disease Control (NCDC), 280 of the new cases were recorded in Lagos, 103 in Oyo, 72 in Ebonyi, 60 in FCT, 46 in Imo, 34 in Edo, 33 in Delta, 25 in Rivers, 23 in Kaduna, 16 in Ondo, 12 in Katsina, 10 in Kano, 8 in Bauchi, 7 in Borno, 5 in Kwara, 4 in Gombe, 2 in Sokoto, 2 in Enugu, 1 in Yobe, 1 in Osun, and 1 in Nasarawa State.

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Clinicians will add dexamethasone for trial says Osagie Ehanire

The Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire announced that it will allow clinicians to add dexamethasone, the life-saving drug recently discovered by a team of researchers from the United Kingdom, to their treatment regimen for trial.

He said dexamethasone is not a “drug you should be using but medicine that the doctor is to use.”

Osagie said:

I did mention that there is a medicine that we are going to ask our clinicians to try. It is not a medicine that you should be using but medicine that the doctor is to use. Luckily this medicine is not new and it is well-known to be used for other purposes as asteroid. It was found to be useful in this case. It is easy to try it out because we know the side effects. Also, the usual dosage is well-known and it is not a medicine that is terribly expensive or unavailable.

We are going to ask our clinicians to also consider adding it for their trials and see what results in it works in our own circumstances for this particular problem.

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50 stranded Nigerians in Pakistan to arrive today

The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama announced on Twitter that an aircraft conveying some stranded Nigerians in Pakistan will arrive today.

He tweeted:

An aircraft conveying 50 of our nationals stranded in Pakistan and 1 Pakistani national departed Islamabad International Airport at about 16.05hrs (4.05 pm) local time. It is expected to arrive Nnamdi Azikwe International Airport, Abuja at 0300 hrs (3.00 am) on Friday, June 19, 2020.

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 The UK abandons coronavirus-tracing app

The British government is abandoning its attempt to develop a coronavirus tracing app from scratch and will instead build a new one based on a system created by Google and Apple. At the Downing Street briefing, the health secretary, Matt Hancock said the government would not “put a date” on when the new app may be launched, although officials conceded it was likely to be in the autumn or winter.

The idea behind the NHS app was that it could trace anybody that a person with coronavirus symptoms came into close contact with by using the Bluetooth connectivity on a standard smartphone and notify them to self-isolate.

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How Nigerian can reduce the coronavirus related death rate

Addressing reporters on Thursday in Abuja, the Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire, explained how Nigeria can reduce the death rate as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. He urged Nigerians to see the increase in the number of confirmed cases as a warning that fatalities would increase too.

Read the full text of the minister’s remarks at the PTF briefing below:

PRESS BRIEFING BY HON. MINISTER OF HEALTH, DR. OSAGIE EHANIRE AT THE PRESIDENTIAL TASK FORCE ON COVID-19 PRESS BRIEFING ON THURSDAY 18TH JUNE, 2020

PROTOCOL

The Nigeria Center for Disease Control yesterday announced 587 new confirmed covid-19 cases, increasing the total tally to 17,735. We have treated and discharged 5,967 persons and 469 persons have sadly been lost to the disease.

We have said that the increasing number of cases should be a warning that fatalities will increase too; but there are measures we can take, to limit case fatality rate.

1 Since majority of fatalities are over 50 years of age, or have pre-existing ailments like diabetes, cancer, hypertension, kidney disease, HIV, etc, this group of citizens has to be specially protected.

2 This protection begins with limiting their exposure to risks of covid19 infection by urging stay at home, except there is urgent and dire need to go out.

3 To wear a face mask or a covering at any time, once outside the house, or when inside the house with persons who may have been exposed.

4 To observe all other non-pharmaceutical advisory, like frequent hand washing, social distancing, respiratory hygiene, sanitizer use, etc.

5 I must emphasize that going to places where there can be a crowd, like market or also places of worship carries risk of increased exposure. l also stress that being in a closed room increases the risk of exposure to infection in proportion to the number of people and the length of time spent with them, because the likelihood of presence of a positive person increases with the number and infection with time of exposure.

6 All persons in the vulnerable group who test positive should go to a treatment center immediately, in their own best interest. A vuln5person is not among those who should risk staying at home, because complications can arise easily and suddenly or at an odd hour of the day or night when there will be no immediate help available.

7 Any person who tested positive and opted to stay home or elsewhere should move to a treatment centre at the first sign of fever or shortness of breath. A delay can be fatal because the disease progression can be unpredictable and faster than imagined.

8 Witherspoon these important measures, we could mitigate the fatality rate. The novel coronavirus is still among us and is infecting people daily, including prominent members of the society. Friends and family have an increasingly important role to play in helping to guide compliance with this advisory. Till it goes away, whenever that is, we must take extreme precaution when going to public places.

I also had the honour yesterday, of joining Mr. President at the China-Africa Extraordinary Summit on Solidarity Against the COVID-19 pandemic, where the desirability of sharing knowledge from research and experience was emphasized, as PTF Chair has reported. This is of value to us because China has considerable experience with covid19.

​Earlier yesterday, I signed a bilateral agreement with the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea on cooperation in the area of public health and medical sciences. The agreement is to start cooperation between both countries in these areas:

(a) Exchanging experience in public health and health sciences

(b) Facilitation of visits by scientists and Exchanging information in research.

​On Monday, 15th June, 2020, I inaugurated the governing council of the Pharmacist Council of Nigeria, where the Council was charged to refocus aspects of the profession to meet up with the realities of today as the Covid-19 Pandemic has brought medicine security to the fore front.

​We have updated the case management guidelines with reviewed changes like discharge criteria and medication used for the treatment of cases. Our treatment centres will be getting an advisory to test applicability of a drug recently repurposed and found effective for treatment of COVID-19

The engagement of States and support for them in management of covid19 will continue to increase with increased capacity building. The Ministry of Health will also be prioritizing the procurement of oxygen generators alongside ventilators as our experience so far shows that oxygen supplementation is in high demand in treatment.

Thank you for your attention.

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India sees an increase in new coronavirus cases in 24 hours

India reported 13,586 coronavirus cases in the past 24 hours, the biggest single-day jump in infections to date. There were 336 deaths reported in the past 24 hours, according to the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare. The total confirmed cases in the country now stand at 380,532, and 12,573 people have died, ministry figures show.

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China reports 32 new coronavirus cases

China recorded 32 new cases of COVID-19 on Thursday. 4 imported cases, 3 in Guangdong province and 1 in Gansu province; 28 indigenous cases, 25 in Beijing municipality, 2 in Hebei province and 1 in Liaoning province, 2 new cases of suspected infections, both are indigenous cases in Beijing, and no deaths.

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India has lifted a ban on the export of hydroxychloroquine

The ban on the export of the anti-malaria drug has been lifted. In March India had banned the export of the drug with some exceptions, followed by a blanket ban in April, CNN reports.

“(The earlier order) has been amended to change the export policy of hydroxychloroquine API and its formulations from “Prohibited” to “Free” with immediate effect,” the notification said.

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Mexico records highest single-day increase in new coronavirus cases

According to the Mexican Health Ministry, Mexico recorded the highest single-day increase in confirmed coronavirus cases after reporting more than 5,000 new infections on Thursday. The ministry recorded 5,662 new cases, bringing the country’s total to 165,455. Mexico also reported 667 new deaths from the virus, bringing its total to 19,747.

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