Delta State Government on Friday announced that it has placed all health-related institutions and disease control mechanisms on red alert in readiness for any possible case of the dreaded coronavirus disease also known as Convid 19.
This followed the news that the disease has been recorded in Lagos on Thursday.
Delta is among the five high-risk states and Abuja for the airborne disease because of the availability of seaports and airport.
Addressing journalists in Asaba, the state Commissioner for Health, Dr. Mordi Ononye said the state had switch from watch mode to alert mode since the Lagos case was discovered, adding that the state was prepared to curtail the disease if there was any outbreak.
He said the team that successfully managed Lassa fever, had built enough capacity and shown commitment to address any health challenge.
Ononye declared that the seaports in Warri, Sapele, Koko and Ogharra had been designated as holding centres for any possible outbreak, adding that all hospitals across the state had been mandated to designate an isolated area as detention centre for any case of Convid 19.
Allaying fears of residents, the Commissioner for Information, Charles Aniagwu said Convid 19 is not a death sentence, adding that the fatality rate is 2.3%.
“It is not as bad as Ebola, and we were able to deal with Ebola. As a state, we maintain international borders because of the airport and seaports, and the disease is coming from outside unlike Lassa fever.
“We have started screening at Asaba Airport but we want to urge our people not to panic; they should go about their lawful businesses without entertaining fears,” Aniagwu said.
The Incident Manager, Delta State Response Management Centre, Dr. Anne Ojimba who said 82,294 Convid 19 cases had be recorded globally, adding that 2,804 deaths had be recorded.
Explaining that the cases mostly occurred in China, Ojimba said there had been reported cases in Algeria and Egypt, making Nigeria a high-risk nation.
Dr. Ojimba gave some tips on how to prevent the disease, urging the public to always engage in adequate and effective hand washing practice.
She enjoined the residents to maintain 1.5 meters away from any person coughing while urging those coughing to observe coughing etiquettes.
Ojimba also called on residents to avoid contacts with persons suspected to be having a respiratory disorder, even as she urged health institutions to take precautionary measures.