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Daily COVID Tracker: NCDC logs 573 new infections, three deaths

Daily COVID Tracker: NCDC logs 573 new infections, three deaths
January 03
07:03 2022

Nigeria on Sunday recorded 573 cases of COVID-19. Here are five updates about the pandemic this Monday.

Omicron surge may lead to herd immunity, says Israel

Israel’s top health adviser says the surge of Omicron cases could see the country reach COVID-19 herd immunity.

Nachman Ash, director-general of the health ministry, however, said the country would pay a price for this and he wanted to see herd immunity achieved via vaccinations instead.

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“The price of herd immunity is very many infections, and that may end up happening. The numbers need to be high to reach herd immunity, it’s something that is possible,” he said.

“But we don’t want to reach it by means of infections, we want it to happen as a result of many people vaccinating.”

Secondary school pupils in UK to test for COVID before new term resumption

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The UK says secondary schools pupils will now be tested for COVID-19 at least once before rejoining classes for the new term.

In a statement announcing the measures, Sajid Javid, UK health secretary, said “regular testing is a key way to support schools and protect face-to-face teaching”.

Ministers have assured schools that testing kits will be provided as needed and asked pupils to test twice weekly.

Nadhim Zahawi, the education secretary, also said face coverings will be required in schools until January 26.

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The new on-site testing rules will be limited to England, where pupils will begin returning to schools for the new term later this week.

France reduces isolation period for fully vaccinated COVID positive persons

France has announced that the period of isolation for fully vaccinated people who test positive has been reduced to seven days from the previous 10 days.

Fully vaccinated people who test positive can now leave quarantine after five days if they show an antigen or negative PCR test. 

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There will be no quarantine for fully-vaccinated individuals. 

However, people must respect protective measures and “undergo regular testing”, Olivier Veran, the french health minister said.

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Nigeria reports 573 cases

Nigeria has reported 573 cases of COVID-19 across the country.

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The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) says the new cases were reported in seven states.

The states that reported new cases include Lagos (281), Benue (202), Kano (61), Borno (20), Jigawa (5), Edo (2),and Oyo (2)

The NCDC said the report includes “a backlog of 20 cases reported for Borno state for 28th (4), 29th (4), 30th (9), and 31st (3) December 2021; a backlog of 6 deaths reported for Borno state from 25th – 28th December 2021; and 61 cases reported for Kano state for 31st December 2021 (27), and 2nd January 2022 (34)”.

The agency said 572 persons were discharged on Sunday, raising the recovery figure to 215,352.

Three persons died of COVID complications and the country’s fatality toll now stands at 3,039.

Nigeria now has a total of 243,450 confirmed cases in the 36 states and the FCT.

UK approves Pfizer COVID pill

UK regulators have approved Pfizer’s antiviral drug Paxlovid.

The approval is for patients aged 18 and over with at least one risk factor for developing severe illness, such as obesity or diabetes, or being over 60.

The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) found the oral treatment “to be safe and effective at reducing the risk of hospitalisation and death in people with mild to moderate Covid-19 infection, who are at an increased risk of developing severe disease”.

The agency said Paxlovid was most effective when taken during the early stages of a COVID-19 infection, and recommended it for use within five days of a patient’s first symptoms.

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