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By Joseph Erunke

THE federal government said it has begun intensive tracing of people who have contacts with the third person that tested positive to the coronavirus disease.

Government said the action is to help identify all persons who the patient has been in contact with since her return.

Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire, speaking, Tuesday, in Abuja,also said the Presidential Taskforce on Coronavirus would hold its inaugural meeting during the day, after which it will  make statements.

He attributed the identification of the third coronavirus case in the country to what he referred to as “stringent surveillance efforts of the Federal Ministry of Health.”

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“The new case of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) within our borders, he said, has brought “the total number of confirmed cases in Nigeria to three.”

According to him, “The latest case is a Nigerian national in her 30s, who returned from a short visit to the United Kingdom on March 1 3th.”

“Fortunately, she decided, upon returning home, to go into a 1 4 day self-isolation, but subsequently developed symptoms of fever and cough on March 1 6th , at which point she voluntarily called the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) tollfree call line, to report her condition,” he said.

Ehanire added that:”Officials from the Lagos State Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) were immediately dispatched to her home to collect samples, which upon testing came out positive for the coronavirus.”

“The lady is currently at the Infectious Disease Hospital (IDH) in Yaba, where she has remained clinically stable and is responding to

“Intensive contact tracing has begun, to help identify all persons who the patient has been in contact with since her return.

“We expect the number to be small, because of her sensible decision to go into self-isolation from the time of her arrival,” he said.

“We commend her for following the recommended guidelines to the letter,” he added.  He said the “Federal Ministry of Health will continue to assess the situation and adjust response accordingly.”

“The inaugural meeting of the Presidential Taskforce on Coronavirus will hold later today, “Ehanire advised people to,” continue to maintain hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette, which has been repeatedly.

“The Federal Government of Nigeria will make further announcements later today,” he disclosed just as he said:”The Federal Ministry of Health continues to carry out the necessary risk assessments on a daily basis.”

He spoke further:”It is important to note that many people who are infected with coronavirus will experience only mild symptoms and recover without incident. Of great concern are those with existing underlying medical conditions and senior citizens, who are known to be more vulnerable.

“We strongly advise these citizens to stay more at home. All Nigerians are required to continue taking necessary precautions to protect themselves and their families.”

Vanguard

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