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COVID-19: NCDC Will Test 2 Million Nigerians In 3 Months – Ihekweazu

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Director-General, Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, Chikwe Ihekweazu, says the agency will test two million Nigerians for COVID-19 in three months at 50,000 per state.

At the briefing of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 in Abuja yesterday, the DG said Nigeria was lagging behind in testing, stressing that the response team’s goal was to avoid a single case in any of the three states (Cross Rivers, Kogi and Yobe) still without any reported case of COVID-19.

He said the Federal Government was working very hard with its development partners to equip labs to be able to carry out the tests. “It’s going to cost us a lot of money, but we can’t do this without a lot of collaboration from everybody. A country that has achieved a lot more in terms of testing is South Africa.

Not only that, they’ve tested more as a proportion of their population. “We’re lagging behind, but now we have to catch up. So, when I referred to this, it is really an epidemiological indicator of how well a response is doing. “Coronavirus is now in 32 states across Nigeria, it doesn’t fly about on its own from state to state; it’s carried by humans.

The Minister of Health, Ehanire, disclosed that the 15-member medical team from China who recently completed their compulsory 14-day quarantine had all tested negative for the COVID-19 virus. He said the Nigerian Army had agreed to support isolation centres with security “as the need arises.”

We seek to limit transmission in Nigeria by discouraging interstate travel.” He said the molecular laboratory at the Aminu Kano Teaching Hospital, Kano, had been re-opened and was already carrying out tests on COVID-19.

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