World Contraception Day, COVID-19 issues dominate health stories last week

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The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has infected over 33 million people globally and killed almost a million since it first surfaced in China last December.

Scientists have been in a race to develop a vaccine against the virus. Some of the promising vaccines are already in the third phase of trial.

However, the World Health Organisation (WHO) had said widespread vaccinations against COVID-19 are not expected until mid-2021.

While these researches are ongoing, Nigeria has recorded over 58,000 confirmed cases of the virus with 1,116 deaths as of Saturday.

The World Contraception Day was also marked on September 26 to improve awareness about contraception and to enable young people make informed choices on their sexual and reproductive health.

Here are some of the stories which made headlines last week.

Nigeria’s death toll rises

Three more people have died from COVID-19 complications, taking the total number of deaths from the virus to 1,116.

Despite the toll of over a thousand deaths from COVID-19 complications, many of the country’s 36 states do not have teams of trained staff for handling COVID-19 burials, according to the latest Health Preparedness Index for states published by SBM, a leading intelligence platform.

Meanwhile, Nigeria also recorded 136 coronavirus infections on Saturday, bringing the total number of infections in the country to 58,198, according to Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC).

African countries record over 35,000 deaths from COVID-19

More than 35,000 people have died from coronavirus complications in Africa since Egypt became the first country in the continent to confirm a coronavirus case about seven months ago, data from the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) revealed on Saturday.

About 1,437,339 infections have been found in the continent of over a billion people thus far.

Tobacco-Induced Heart Disease Kills 1.9 million people yearly – WHO

At least 1.9 million people die from tobacco-induced heart disease yearly, the World Health Organisation (WHO) said on Tuesday.

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The international agency made this known in a joint statement with the World Heart Federation and the University of Newcastle, Australia ahead of the World Heart Day, marked on September 29.

The statement indicates that smokeless tobacco is responsible for around 200,000 deaths from coronary heart disease per year.

10% of Nigeria’s COVID-19 cases below age 19 – Minister

The Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire, says records show that 10 per cent of all positive COVID-19 cases treated are below the age of 19 years.

Mr Ehanire made this disclosure at the daily briefing of the PTF on COVID-19 on Monday in Abuja.

NAFDAC To Prosecute Health Workers Promoting Breast Milk Substitutes

The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) says it will prosecute any health worker caught promoting Breast Milk Substitute (BMS) and other infant formula in health centres.

Nantim Mullah, Deputy Director, NAFDAC, Kaduna Zonal Office, gave the warning in Kaduna on Thursday, at a one-day sensitisation meeting on the International Code of BMS and National Regulations on infant formula.

Coronavirus: Nigeria shuts two isolation centres due to lack of patients

Authorities in Abuja have shut two of the four isolation centres that cater for coronavirus patients in the Nigerian capital.

COVID-19 isolation centres located inside Karu and Asokoro general hospitals are now closed following the reduction in the number of patients.

Only the treatment centres in Idu and THISDAY Dome will now hold COVID-19 patients in Abuja.

FG inaugurates Infectious Disease Centre in Abuja

The Federal Government on Friday inaugurated the first Infectious Disease Centre (IDC), in the Federal Capital Territory, and handed it over to the University of Abuja Teaching Hospital (UATH).

Speaking at the inauguration of the 40-bed centre in Gwagwalada, Abuja, the Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire, said that the centre would improve Nigeria’s capacity to respond to all infectious diseases.

WCD: Cultural, religious factors hindering reproductive health in Nigeria – Group

As Nigeria joins the rest of the world to commemorate the 2020 World Contraception Day (WCD), an international organisation has said cultural and religious barriers are major factors hindering progress in sexual and reproductive health in the country.

The Head, Marketing and Communications, Marie Stopes International Organisation Nigeria (MSION), Ogechi Onuoha, said this at a virtual media conference on Friday. The conference was organised by MISON in conjunction with Love Matters Naija as part of activities to mark the 2020 WCD.

COVID-19: FG receives 3 ‘Smart Walk-Through Booths’ for sample collection

The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has received three ”Smart Walk-Through Booths” for COVID -19 sample collection, Chikwe Ihekweazu, Director-General of the centre has said.

Ihekweazu said the booths were donated by the Government of the Republic of Korea through the Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA).

COVID-19 threatens progress in women, children’s health – UN Report

The coronavirus pandemic threatens to turn back the clock on a decade of progress in women and children’s health, according to a United Nations (UN) report released on Friday.

The report highlights significant advances made since the launch of the UN’s Every Woman Every Child movement 10 years ago, including more than one billion children being vaccinated, and deaths of under-fives reaching an all-time low in 2019.

Coronavirus: Four of Nigeria’s 36 states without a single infection, death in over 20 days

For the past 10 weeks, Nigeria seems to be riding firmly along a plateau in its coronavirus epidemiological curve.

At least four of the country’s 36 states have officially gone over 20 days without recording a single COVID-19 infection or a death attributable to the virus.

This is according to the coronavirus situation report published by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) on Friday.


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