Nigeria has so far recorded 10 new cases of the Delta COVID-19 variant. Disclosing this to journalists at the ministerial briefing on COVID-19 in Abuja, Mrs. Elsie Ilori, the Director of Disease Surveillance Department, while giving updates on Nigeria’s COVID-19 situation, said that progress had been made in response to the ongoing pandemic with the fact-paced development of diagnostic, therapeutic, and vaccines globally, variants of concern with increased transmissibility pose a threat.
Ilori, who represented the Director-General, Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), Dr. Chikwe Ihekweazu, said “With sequencing efforts, we have detected 10 cases which are confirmed to be the Delta variant.
“While doing this, we are scaling up our testing capability, by the rollout of rapid Diagnostic Test Kits (RTDs), in selected states nationwide. As we have mentioned before, we encourage congregate settings, such as hospitals, schools, workplaces, and correctional facilities, to take advantage of the WHO, approved RTDs kits to detect cases promptly.
“We are working hard to ensure genomic surveillance of travelers’ samples and to scale up our genomic sequencing capacity.”
The NCDC boss said that the country’s test positive rate based on the Polymerase Chain Reaction test alone, which he noted was an indication used to understand the level of virus transmission increased to 3.4 percent in the country.
He said “This represents a rise compared to Test Positivity Rate which was sustained for several weeks at around 1 percent in the country. In addition, last week five deaths were recorded. These figures must serve as a strong warning to be even more on our guard regarding reducing the risk of COVID-19 spread, especially considering the more transmissible Delta variants detected in the country,” he advised.
Ihekweazu noted that Lagos state continued to have the highest recorded cases to the current caseload in the country.
He stressed that other states with recently recorded increases in cases include Akwa Ibom, Ekiti, Oyo, and Rivers states.
“Akwa Ibom had a sudden surge in cases in the last week and so, we have deployed a Rapid Response Team, to support the state’s response activities.
“The team will support Akwa Ibom’s Emergency Operations Centre incident management systems, ensure the smooth running of samples collection centers, laboratory cases detection, and general coordination,” he said.
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