In the last three months, the world has been battling the new coronavirus outbreak which has reached over 155 countries and infected 157,844 people.
The World Health Organisation on Friday declared Europe as the epicentre of the disease as cases have been slowing down in China where the disease originated. The outbreak has affected every sector globally.
Meanwhile, Nigeria is also battling other diseases, in particular Lassa and yellow fevers.
Here is the round up of some of the stories which made the headlines last week.
Coronavirus: Europe now new epicentre for Covid-19
Europe has now become the new epicentre of the Covid-19 pandemic, the World Health Organisation declared on Friday.
As of Friday, new confirmed cases in China where the disease originated from in December have dropped. But the disease has spread across the world, having been reported in every continent except Antarctica.
The virus, which emerged from Wuhan, China, less than three months ago, has infected more than 132,000 people in 123 countries and territories with over 5,000 people dead. Over 70,000 have also recovered from the disease.
Lassa Fever: Nigeria’s death toll reaches 144
Nigeria reported that the death toll from the ongoing Lassa fever outbreak had risen to 144.
The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) on Wednesday said since the onset of the 2020 outbreak, the country has recorded 855 confirmed cases and 144 deaths.
WHO declares Coronavirus a pandemic
The Covid-19 outbreak was, on Wednesday, classified as a pandemic by the World Health Organisation.
The WHO chief, Tedros Ghebreyesus, at a briefing on the status of the disease in Geneva, said the declaration was made after careful assessment of the outbreak and severity of its spread across the world.
Coronavirus: 168 die in Italy under 24 hours
Italy on Tuesday reported 168 deaths from the coronavirus in just 24 hours, the highest single-day toll since the appearance of the deadly disease last December.
The disturbing death toll came on Italy’s first day under a nationwide lockdown with public events cancelled, movement restricted and schools and universities closed. All these were put in place in a drastic bid to slow the pace of Covid-19 in Europe’s worst-hit country.
British Airways to cut jobs over coronavirus
British Airways will cut jobs after the coronavirus pandemic devastated demand for global air travel, its chief executive Alex Cruz said on Friday.
“To be frank, given the changing circumstances, we can no longer sustain our current level of employment and jobs will be lost — perhaps for a short period, perhaps longer-term,” Mr Cruz said in an internal memo confirmed by the group.
Global airlines have cancelled thousands of flights worldwide, as COVID-19 decimates demand for passenger travel, with destinations to China and Italy in particularly hit hard.
Formal sector retirees to retain NHIS benefit till age 70 – FG
The federal government has promised that formal sector retirees will soon have the benefit of retaining their National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) up till the age of 70 years before switching-over to the National Non-Contributory Health Insurance Scheme.
The Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire, said at the first International Training of Trainers in Geriatric and the launch of the Elderly Friendly Hospitals Initiative (ELDFRHI), at the University of Benin Teaching Hospital (UBTH).
Mr Ehanire said the federal government is working with the National Pension Commission, Pension Transitional Arrangement Directorate (PTAD) and National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) in achieving the promise.
In four years 494 health facilities attacked in Syria – WHO
In the past four years, about 494 health care facilities have been attacked in Syria, leading to the death of 470 patients and health staff, the World Health Organisation has said.
WHO while condemning the attacks on health care said that has been the hallmark of the complex humanitarian crisis in Syria that this month enters its tenth year.
WHO‘s Regional Emergency Director in the Eastern Mediterranean, Richard Brennan, said “the data we can now reveal on attacks on health in Syria is a grim testament to a blatant disrespect for international humanitarian law and the lives of civilians and health workers.”
Coronavirus pandemic ‘could be over by June’ if countries act, says Chinese adviser
The global coronavirus pandemic could be over by June if countries mobilise to fight it, a senior Chinese medical adviser said on Thursday, as China declared the peak had passed there and new cases in Hubei fell to single digits for the first time.
Zhong Nanshan, the government’s senior medical adviser, told reporters that as long as countries take the outbreak seriously and are prepared to take firm measures, it could be over worldwide in a matter of months.
“My advice is calling for all countries to follow WHO instructions and intervene on a national scale,” he said. “If all countries could get mobilized, it could be over by June.”
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