Any malaria-like signs should be treated as COVID-19 – Sanwo-Olu

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Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu said on Tuesday that any malaria-like signs should now be considered and handled as COVID-19 unless proved otherwise.

The governor, who briefed newsmen at the State House, Ikeja on the state update of COVID-19, said that such signs should be treated as virus infections of COVID-19 unless otherwise confirmed.

“In this second wave of the current pandemic, any malaria-like symptoms should be considered as COVID-19 virus infection unless and until otherwise proven. Any affected individual with COVID-like symptoms should proceed to any of our public health facilities and/or laboratories to get tested for free,” he said.

The governor has said it was important that people should not stigmatise or discriminate against those infected by the virus because it is not a death sentence.

“Seeking help early and quickly significantly improves the chances of survival for severe to critical cases. Wear a mask everywhere and ensure that you wash your re-usable mask regularly and also properly dispose of used disposable masks,” he said.

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The governor disclosed that, as at 17 January 2021, Lagos reported 41,374 confirmed cases of COVID-19, of which 28,452 were recovered and were inside the community, while 9,213 were currently involved in the community.

“Over the last 12 months, about 3,776 COVID-19-related patients have been admitted into our various care centres, with a registered fatality rate of approximately 0.67 percent (277 cases).

“So far, 263,358 tests have been conducted between our public and private laboratories, with 41,374 diagnosed as positive. This has allowed us the opportunity to target our interventions with precision and ensure the efficient use and mobilisation of resources,” he said.

Sanwo-Olu also noted that the rise in the positivity of cases necessitated the availability of higher concentrations of condensed oxygen in mild to extreme cases of admission to insulation centres.

The governor reported that the demand for oxygen has increased from 70 6-litre cylinders a day to 350 6-litre cylinders in the Yaba Mainland Hospital over the last few weeks.

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“This is projected to more than double to 750 6-litre cylinders, before the end of January 2021. In addition to providing oxygen at our isolation centres, the Lagos State Government has decentralised the availability of oxygen across the state through the provision of 10 oxygen and sampling kiosks.

“Oxygen therapy and other related services will be provided to patients that required them. Five of these 10 centres have been commissioned while the remaining five will be ready for use within the next four weeks,” he said.

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