By Olawale Abdul-Fatah
Concerned by the World Health Organisation (WHO) claims that Nigeria especially Lagos could record a case of Coronavirus, the State Government has asked travelers returning from China or exposed to a traveler from China or other countries where the virus has been reported to observe self-quarantine on arrival in the state.
The State Government noted that this new strategy of travelers subjecting themselves to unsupervised self-quarantine is the first step in containing Corona Virus for the State.
Commissioner for Health, Prof. Akin Abayomi, in a statement on Sunday, argued that self-quarantine is a public health strategy used to separate and isolate individuals who may have been exposed to a communicable disease.
Abayomi added that the major reason for the adoption of this strategy is to protect the returnee who may have been exposed and residents from been infected by the deadly virus.
“During unsupervised self-quarantine, we expect persons concerned to respond to the State advise and act like responsible citizens. You are required to restrict your movement to your home, monitor yourself closely, report any symptoms that may develop to the Ministry of Health on the contact numbers provided and engage in good personal hygiene”.
While giving further details on the self-quarantine strategy, the Commissioner explained that persons observing self-quarantine must stay at home during the whole duration of the self-quarantine, and must avoid workplace, minimize contact with family members, ensure no contact with visitors, refrain from attending or going to public or social functions and must not ride or fly in any mode of public transportation.
“You must monitor yourself closely and diligently during the self-quarantine period, to identify if you develop symptoms including, but not limited, to headache, cough, sore throat, fever, chest pain, chills, shortness of breath, breathing difficulties and pneumonia”, he added
Novel Corona Virus Infection has an incubation period of 5 to 14 days. This means if you have been in China or any other country that is now experiencing Corona virus transmission from person to person, you may become unwell after a period of 5 to 14 days of your return. If you feel unwell or develop symptoms, immediately contact the Ministry of Health on the numbers provided to communicate how you are feeling”, he said.
The Commissioner, while dismissing news making the rounds that a case of novel CoronaVirus has been recorded in the state, said Lagos State has no suspected or confirmed cases of Corona Virus infection.
He urged citizens to disregard the misinformation as well as any other information about the virus that did not emanate from his office, the State Ministry of Health, Federal Ministry of Health or the National Centre for Disease Control.
“I would like to reassure Lagosians that our vigilance levels are very high and we are putting more measures in place to safeguard the State. Through our strategic initiatives with Federal Authorities we are putting higher levels of surveillance into effect at all international airports in Nigeria including Lagos to ensure that we minimize the threat of entry of any cases of Corona Virus”, Abayomi stated.