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COVID-19: Nigeria Records 576 New Cases, Eight Deaths in 15 States

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Nigeria’s health agency says it recorded 576 new infections of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) and five deaths from complications related to the disease.

The Nigeria Centre For Disease Control (NCDC) said this via its verified website on Saturday.

Nigeria has so far tested 952,975 persons since the first confirmed case of the COVID-19 pandemic was announced on February 27, 2020.

It said that the total number of infections in the country is now 89,163.

The agency sadly said that the total death cases recorded in the country is 1,302.

It, however, stated that 74,789 patients had been discharged from the various isolation centres in the country, having tested negative to the virus.

The NCDC said that the new infections were from 14 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

It said that Lagos state recorded the highest figure with 277 new cases, followed by the FCT and Oyo with 90 and 51 new cases respectively.

Other states with new cases are Nasarawa 49, Sokoto 23, Anambra 14, Bauchi 11, Imo 11, Kano 11, Edo 10, Plateau 10, Ogun nine, Osun five, Jigawa three and Rivers two.

The NCDC says a multi-sectoral national emergency operations centre (EOC), activated at Level 3, continues to coordinate the national response activities.

According to the agency, 576 new confirmed cases and eight deaths were recorded in the country as at Jan. 2, 2021.

The public health agency stated that till date, 89,163 cases had been confirmed, 74,789 cases discharged and 1,302 deaths recorded in 36 states and the FCT.

Meanwhile, the agency said that COVID-19 might cause severe complications in the elderly and people with underlying health conditions.

It urged Nigerians to “take responsibility” to protect themselves and stay safe:

“Avoid non-essential travel; wear a face mask; maintain physical distance; wash your hands regularly,” it said.

The NCDC stressed that physical distancing helps in avoiding contact with respiratory droplets when infected person with COVID-19 coughs or sneezes.

“Keep a distance of two metres from anyone showing symptoms of a respiratory illness to stay safe,” it advised.

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Zimbabwe Warns Citizens Against Patronising Rogue COVID-19 Doctor

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The Medical and Dental Practitioners Council of Zimbabwe (MDPCZ), on Friday, warned against the illegal practice of one Jacqueline Carey Stone, who was allegedly treating COVID-19 patients using unregistered medicines.

In a statement, the MDPCZ said the public should be wary of Stone’s practice, as she does not have a valid license to practice as a medical professional in the country.

“The premises at which she is treating COVID-19 patients have not been registered for purposes of medical practice and thus posing a health risk to the public.

“She is putting the lives of the public at risk by treating the patients with unregistered medicines, including medicines for animal use,’’ the MDPCZ said.

It added that Stone is conducting clinical trials without the full approval of the Research Council of Zimbabwe, and is also working with unregistered persons to dispense and counsel patients.

“MDPCZ will not allow any registered medical practitioner to offer unsafe treatment to the public of Zimbabwe,’’ said the body, that regulates the practice of medicine and dentistry in the country.

Zimbabwe is in the grip of a resurging COVID-19 pandemic.

The death toll has risen phenomenally since the beginning of this month and now stands at 917 out of the 30,047 COVID-19 infections recorded in the country since last March.

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15-Day COVID-19 Lockdown: Rwanda Distributes Food to Vulnerable Families

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Following its decision to lockdown Kigali, its capital, the Rwanda authorities have begun the distribution of COVID-19 palliatives to vulnerable families in affected by the restriction.

News Central reports that the Rwandan government had, on Monday, imposed a 15-day lockdown on Kigali to curb the spread coronavirus after a surge in cases in the capital.

All movements outside homes require an approved permit from the police, except for essential service providers.

However, to help some 3,000 families – identified as the most vulnerable – cope with the lockdown the government is distributing food rations to households.

Local and international reports said that as of Thursday evening households have started receiving sacks of rice, maize flour and beans.

Some 3,000 families have been identified as the most vulnerable. The city has a population of about one million people.

There have been concerns that hundreds of thousands of residents who live hand to mouth would face hunger during the lockdown.

The authorities have assured that food will reach the most vulnerable, as well as poor Covid-19 patients being treated at home.

The rations were being delivered by volunteers who had tested negative before the programme started, city officials said.

A free phone line is available for requests from “those who want and merit the food aid to be delivered at their doorsteps”.

On Thursday Rwanda reported nine Covid-19 deaths, the highest daily fatalities so far, and 310 new cases.

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COVID-19: Mali Plans to Start Vaccination in April

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The Malian government plans to buy over 8.4 million doses of coronavirus vaccine, the country’s council of ministers has said.

The council said it expects to roll out a vaccination campaign in April.

The vaccine is expected to cost Mali – which has a population of about 18.5 million and has so far recorded 7,911 Covid-19 cases and over 320 deaths – $58m.

The government remarks that the cost would be covered with financial assistance from the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunisation (GAVI) and the World Bank.

GAVI and WHO co-run the COVAX scheme which helps developing countries to secure fair access to COVID-19 vaccines.

It did not specify which vaccines it planned to buy.

Mali like other countries in Sub-Saharan Africa is battling a second wave of coronavirus infections, although its infection rate has decreased from a peak in early January.

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