The federal government is on high alert to forestall any likely outbreak of the reported novel coronavirus from China.
Although reports from the World Health Organisation (WHO) indicate that the risk of spread of the disease to countries outside China is low, the Federal Ministry of Health (FMoH) is leaving no stone upturned as its Port Health Services are on alert at points of entry.
Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses, some causing illness in people and others that circulate among animals, including camels, cats, dogs and bats.
Common signs of coronavirus infection includes – fever, cough, shortness of breath & breathing difficulties. In severe cases, infection can cause pneumonia, kidney failure & death.
A statement on Monday by the Nigeria Center for Disease Control NCDC said: “The NCDC is aware of the ongoing outbreak of a novel coronavirus in Wuhan, China.
“We have received guidance from the World Health Organisation, noting that the risk of spread to countries outside of the region is low. The Federal Ministry of Health’s (FMoH) Port Health Services is on alert at points of entry.
“Common signs of coronavirus infection includes – fever, cough, shortness of breath & breathing difficulties. In severe cases, infection can cause pneumonia, kidney failure & death”.
According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), as of January 11, Chinese health authorities have identified more than 40 human infections with a novel coronavirus in an outbreak of pneumonia under investigation in Wuhan City, Hubei Province, China.
The preliminary identification of the novel coronavirus was announced by the World Health Organization external icon on January 9, 2020.
Infection of humans with the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV) results in substantial morbidity and mortality, with death resulting primarily from respiratory failure. While the lungs are the major site of infection, the brain is also infected in some patients.
China seems to be the business “Mecca” for most Nigerians as thousands travel in and out of the country yearly, especially for business purposes; others for pleasure and other personal reasons.
This increases the risk on importing the disease into the country.
The NCDC therefore advised travelers from Wuhan, China to Nigeria to report to a medical facility and NCDC if they feel ill.