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Daily COVID Tracker: NCDC logs 268 new infections — but zero deaths in six days

Daily COVID Tracker: NCDC logs 268 new infections — but zero deaths in six days
December 09
07:57 2021

Nigeria on Wednesday recorded 268 cases of COVID-19. Here are five updates about the pandemic this Thursday. 

WHO: Countries must act now to prevent spread of Omicron  

The World Health Organisation (WHO) says the Omicron COVID variant has now been detected in 57 countries.

Speaking at a news briefing on Wednesday, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO director-general, said governments around the world should reassess their national COVID-19 response to slow the spread of the Omicron variant.

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He said certain features of Omicron, including its global spread, suggest it could have a major impact on the course of the pandemic.

“The steps countries take today, and in the coming days and weeks will determine how Omicron unfolds. If countries wait until their hospitals start to fill up, it is too late. Don’t wait, act now,” Tedros said.

Three doses of our COVID vaccine effective against Omicron variant, says Pfizer

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Pfizer-BioNTech has announced that three doses of its COVID-19 vaccine provide sufficient protection against the Omicron variant.

Since the discovery of the new strain and its designation as a variant of concern (VOC) by WHO, there have been concerns about how effective current vaccines are against it.

But in a statement on Wednesday, Pfizer and BioNTech said blood tests from persons who received the booster dose showed that it neutralised the Omicron variant to levels that are comparable to previous versions of the virus after two doses.

UK imposes measures to contain Omicron

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British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has imposed measures in England to tackle the spread of the Omicron variant.

Residents are now required to work from home, wear masks in public places and use vaccine passes.

“While the picture may get better, and I sincerely hope that it will, we know that the remorseless logic of exponential growth could lead to a big rise in hospitalisations and therefore, sadly, in deaths,” Johnson said.

Nigeria records 268 infections 

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Nigeria’s COVID-19 daily deaths have declined as no fatalities have been reported in the past six days, but the number of infections has continued to surge.

The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) says 268 fresh cases have been recorded in 10 states.

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Lagos reported 225 infections — 84 percent of the total cases logged on Wednesday. Rivers recorded 17 infections, while Enugu added 10 new cases to its COVID chart.

Other states with fresh cases are Edo (5), Bauchi (3), Ogun (3), Oyo (2), Kaduna, Bayelsa and Delta reported one case each.

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The NCDC said Wednesday’s figure includes a backlog of cases and recoveries.

Twenty-five people were said to have been discharged after they recovered from the infections.

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No deaths were reported for the six consecutive days and the fatality figure stands at 2,980.

Nigeria now has 215,164 confirmed cases and 207,520 recoveries.

Bill Gates: The world is better prepared to tackle potentially bad variants

Bill Gates, billionaire businessman and co-founder of Microsoft, says the world is better prepared to handle new COVID variants such as Omicron.

In his end-of-year letter on Wednesday, Gates said there is no doubt about how concerning Omicron is, adding that researchers are working urgently to learn more about it.

Gates also expressed concern about the unfair distribution of vaccines, saying with the emergence of new variants and challenges with vaccination, the world is not as close to the end of the pandemic as he had hoped.

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