Nigeria to follow protocol amidst fourth wave as the number of COVID-19 confirmed cases reached 165, 419 out of 1,977,479 samples tested, with 156,297 successfully treated and discharged.

The Minister of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire said at the presidential steering committee on COVID-19 press briefing, that COVID-19 positive cases have continued to drop even with sustained testing.

“The case fatality rate has reduced since the beginning of this month, but should not at all be a reason to slow down. we should rather increase our commitment to reducing the spread of the disease as well as fatalities.

“We must remain on our guard. The experience of other countries shows the unpredictability of this disease, such that countries in Asia, such as India, Pakistan and Thailand, have been badly shaken by the enormity of the new wave of infections.

“We continue to send our thoughts and prayers to our friends in India, and take this opportunity to renew our caution in this COVID-19 pandemic response,” Ehanire said.

According to him, Nigeria and India have very similar demographics, and the COVID-19 trends so far have been quite similar.

The Minister of Health warned Nigerians to avoid crowds and mass gatherings for whatever reason, whether for politics, religious, commercial or social occasions.

He also urged Nigerians to wear their masks at all times, whether outside or inside the house and not accept to chat or do business with anyone not wearing a mask.

“Wash or sanitize hands frequently and cover mouth when sneezing or coughing.

“Take your vaccination when invited to do so, without hesitation. It is our best chance of escaping infection if we come in contact by mistake with an infected person.

“As we approach the Salah holidays, it is of particular importance to remain aware of risks involved in traveling gathering, celebrating and generally letting down our guards,” he said.

He urged everyone to take responsibility for their personal and their family’s safety from COVID-19 infection.

Experience from India and other countries showed that the terrible third wave that has caused so much loss of human lives, was facilitated and fuelled by events immediately related to political campaigns, elections and religious gatherings.

“As we celebrate the Sallah days ahead, let us remember this warning and ensure that we avoid all situations that tempt us to forget COVID-19 preventive measures and life saving non-pharmaceutical measures.

“Above all, we must keep our Elderly and vulnerable populations safe, by encouraging them to stay indoors and avoid crowded places, wear their facemasks, ensure physical distancing and observe appropriate hand hygiene.

“Ramadan Kareem and may the Almighty grant us happy salah holiday,” Ehanire added.

Voice of Nigeria VON

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