Coronavirus: Nigeria increases testing above 27, 000

The Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire, at a press briefing on the outbreak of Coronavirus in Nigeria
The Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire, at a press briefing on the outbreak of Coronavirus in Nigeria

The Federal Government on Monday said the country has ramped up testing for the coronavirus to 27,078.

Osagie Ehanire, the Minister of Health, disclosed this in Abuja at the Presidential Taskforce (PTF) briefing on COVID-19 in the country.

Mr Ehanire said this has yielded about 4,399 cases in 35 states with a gender ratio of 30 per cent to 70 per cent of men and women. He said 778 persons have been discharged with 143 deaths.

The minister added that personnel in federal hospitals participated in a multi-national teleconference with medical and academic experts in Beijing on the COVID-19 treatment strategy of China.

“Our COVID-19 response must become a concerted national collaborative drive to become more effective.

“This requires synergies across all tiers of government levels which should be extended and sustained in all states,” he said.

Herbal cure

The minister revealed plans by the government to get Madagascar’s herbal cure for COVID-19.

He stressed that the plan was subject to an analysis to see how the herb works and how it is used.

“Concerning the question on the cure from Madagascar, this has been making the news and we have the promise of being able to get a sample of the herb/botanical product for analysis.

“And also we probably use that opportunity to speak with the health authorities particularly the scientific community on how they use it.

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“We will also give that to the research community with us here in Nigeria to examine and do what they can do with it.

“We will like to compare the sample with the strain here in our country; whether they are identical or similar and see what properties it has. Things like that are normally subjected to analysis to find out how it works,” he said.

The World Health Organization has warned that it has not authorised the use of the herbal cocktail, and has advised against self-medication.

It has however proven effective in the East African country with no case of death as a result of COVID-19.

(NAN)

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