Nigeria has recorded its first case of Coronavirus after an Italian national tested positive to the virus, the Federal Ministry of Health has said
The case was confirmed on Thursday
“The case is an Italian citizen who entered Nigeria on the 25th of February from Milan, Italy for a brief business visit. He fell ill on the 26th February and was transfered to Lagos State Biosecurity Facilities for isolation and testing,” the Lagos State Ministry of Health also said in a statement.
“#COVID2019 infection was confirmed by the Virology Laboratory of the Lagos University Teaching Hospital @LUTHofficial, part of the Laboratory Network of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control @NCDCgov.
“The patient is clinically stable, with no serious symptoms, and is being managed at the Infectious Disease Hospital (Mainland Hospital) in Yaba, Lagos.”
It is the third reported case of Coronavirus in Africa after Egypt and Algeria; the suspect in the former, a foreigner, later tested negative to the virus. In Algeria, an Italian who arrived Algiers on February 17 tested positive.
On Wednesday, the Lagos State government had announced that a Chinese national suspected to have the virus tested negative.
On Thursday, the deputy senate leader, Ajayi Borrowfice, lamented Nigeria’s poor preventive measures towards COVID-19.
Earlier, the World Health Organisation in preparation for an eventual importation of the disease had listed 13 Africa countries (Egypt, Algeria, South Africa, Nigeria, Ethiopia, Morocco, Sudan, Angola, Tanzania, Ghana, Kenya, Rwanda and Tunisia) as having the highest ‘importation risk’.
These countries, according to WHO, are top priority for preparedness measures due to their direct links or high volume of travel to China.
The respiratory disease, which has killed over 2000 people, is capable of spreading through human-to-human contact, droplets carried through sneezing and coughing, and germs left on inanimate objects.
Symptoms of the disease can include a sore throat, runny nose, fever or pneumonia and can progress to multiple organ failure or death in some severe cases.