The COVID-19 situation in Nigeria is growing more critical every day, with the numbers expected to rise dramatically over the coming weeks.
Latest figures released by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) as at 11:10 pm on Monday, April 20, show that the country now has a total of 665 confirmed cases of COVID-19.
This indicates that 38 new confirmed cases of the rampaging virus were recorded the same day across eight states of Nigeria.
A breakdown of the 38 fresh cases indicates that for the very first time, Lagos did not record any confirmed case. Kano State, the commercial hub of Northern Nigeria has taken the lead with 23 cases.
It is followed by Gombe with five cases, Kaduna three, Abia and Borno – two each while Sokoto, Ekiti and Federal Capital Territory (FCT) all recorded one case each.
NCDC however says 188 COVID-19 patients have been discharged, noting that 22 deaths have now been officially recorded in Nigeria
In the meantime, it seems the urgently needs to train hundreds of community health workers and health care providers to ensure that those on the front line have the knowledge and skills to identify symptoms, prevent transmission, and reduce the spread of COVID-19.
The virus has the potential to spread at an unparalleled rate among Nigeria’s most vulnerable and marginalised communities, including slum areas where families live in cramped and poor living conditions.
With a lack of adequate healthcare and support, these communities are facing a disaster with no means of protection.
Without a doubt, coronavirus has become the greatest global health emergency in recent memory. It’s affecting the way we all go about our daily lives, devastating families and pushing healthcare services to their limits across the world.
But for the world’s poorest and most fragile communities, the disease will have a much greater and deadlier impact – unless the world acts now.