Nigeria on Thursday recorded 754 cases of COVID-19. Here are five updates about the pandemic this Friday, TheCable reports.
US donates additional 2.5 million Pfizer vaccines to Nigeria
The United States has donated an additional 2.5 million Pfizer vaccine doses to Nigeria.
The US Embassy, in a statement on Thursday, said the vaccine doses arrived in Abuja this week and were received by the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) and taken to cold storage in preparation for distribution.
The vaccines are planned to be distributed to over 3,000 health facilities across all 36 states and the FCT. The statement added that the vaccines in the next few weeks will be available across major locations for vaccination in the country.
“Over the next several weeks, the vaccines will be available at major markets, shopping malls, event centers, motor parks, airports, places of employment, and religious institutions as part of Nigeria’s mass vaccination campaign,” the statement reads.
WHO: Severe cases of Omicron COVID variant remain low in South Africa
The World Health Organisation (WHO) says severe cases of the Omicron COVID-19 variant leading to hospitalisation across South Africa remain low.
It said emerging data from South Africa indicates that Omicron may cause less severe illness, adding that the ICU occupancy in South Africa between November 14 and December 4 was only 6.3 percent, which is very low compared with the time when the country was facing the peak linked to the Delta variant in July.
Matshidiso Moeti, WHO regional director for Africa, said with Omicron now present in 60 countries globally, travel bans that mainly target African countries are hard to justify.
“We call for science-based public health measures to counter the spread of COVID-19,” she said.
“Travel restrictions, which come at the height of the end-of-year tourist season is ravaging Africa’s economies, with a knock-on impact that is potentially devastating to the health of Africans.’’
Two Chinese COVID drugs receive emergency approval
The National Medical Products Administration (NMPA) has given emergency approval to the registration application of two COVID-19 medicines, BRII-196 and BRII-198.
This is China’s first approved COVID-19 virus-neutralising antibody combination therapy with independent intellectual property rights.
According to the NMPA, the two drugs are used in combination to treat adult and adolescent patients with mild and moderate symptoms and with severe risk factors for progression.
It said the medicines are conditionally approved for adolescents, ranging from 12 to 17 years of age, with a bodyweight greater than 40 kg.
Nigeria records 754 COVID cases
Nigeria has recorded 754 new cases of COVID-19 in 11 states and the federal capital territory.
The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) confirmed this in its update for December 9.
According to the data provided by the agency, the states that recorded infections are Lagos (595), FCT (68), Imo (49), Edo (13), Oyo (9), Delta (5), Katsina (4), Kano (3), Plateau (3), Ekiti (2), Gombe (2) and Rivers (1).
The NCDC said there was one fatality from the infection on Thursday, leaving the total number of fatalities to 2,981.
The NCDC said the report includes 595 confirmed cases reported for Lagos state for December 8 (294) and December 9 (301); 68 confirmed cases reported for the FCT for December 8 (28) and December 9 (40); five confirmed cases reported for Delta state for December 8; 16 discharged cases reported for the FCT for December 8; one discharged case reported for Lagos state for December 6; and one death case reported for Lagos state is for December 6.
To date, 215,918 cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed in Nigeria with 207,619 discharges made.
Netherlands to require COVID vaccine boosters by February
The Netherlands has announced that from February, the only vaccine certificates that will be accepted are those that show that the holder has received a COVID-19 booster shot.
People who have not received a booster should still be able to travel within the European Union if they show proof of a negative COVID-19 test.
Travellers from the US can enter the Netherlands if they are fully vaccinated or qualify for one of the European entry ban exemption categories. Travellers who are eligible under an exemption who cannot show proof of vaccination must be able to show a negative COVID-19 test result.