A six weeks old baby is one of the five coronavirus index cases, Nigeria’s health minister Osagie Ehanire said on Wednesday.
Briefing journalists in Abuja, Ehanire disclosed that the baby along with the mother tested positive for the virus.
With 8 cases confirmed in Nigeria in total, the six weeks old baby is the youngest coronavirus patient in Nigeria since the first confirmed case on Thursday, February 28 2020.
Out of the five new cases, three arrived from the United States, while two came in from the United Kingdom.
Ehanire disclosed that the two cases from the UK are Nigerians. He said the American national among the new cases, is a motorcyclist who crossed into Nigeria through a land border.
“They were actually two but one tested negative,” Ehanire said.
Ehanire said the government is collating information on the travelers with a detailed travel history of each person being compiled and contacts currently being traced, to identify persons who have recently been in contact with the index cases.
He stated that the National Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) led by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) and supported by partners, is supporting response in the states while the Federal Government through Federal Ministry of Health is conducting a risk assessment to guide the government in decision making.
Ehanire disclosed that one of the index cases is in Ekiti while the remaining four are in Lagos, saying they are being followed up by the public health officials supported by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC).
The minister also noted that Nigeria is at a stage of importation of disease that is coming as single cases “…we are not in a stage of community transmission where it is becoming widespread and is focused on contact tracing to ensure there is no gap and that it does not get to the level community transmission. We will also inform the airline that brought the affected persons and the country as well as the World Health Organization (WHO).”
The minister urged citizens not to panic, but allow experts in public health to guide response in a calculated, scientific manner.