How to stay safe during Covid-19 in Nigeria
Three months into 2020 and there is a pandemic that is raging steadily, affecting countries and it´s citizens, while scientist's across the world are working round the clock to find a vaccine to the disease, the focus on this article will be on how to stay safe during Covid-19 pandemic.
The daily reports and statistics from John Hopkins University Map, provide updated statistics on amount of infected, recovered and deceased people by COVID-19 all over the world. Click to see live updates.
Statistics from John Hopkins University Map on the spread of COVID-19, Click to see live updates.
Several news stations and health care institutions are constantly providing updates on the development of the spread and appeal to the masses on how to effectively assist in reducing the spread in order to contain COVID-19 which has proven that we should all be concerned at the rate that it’s spreading and claiming lives at an alarming rate.
Healthcare systems being among the many things affected and thoroughly challenged, the virus outbreak is most likely going to have significant economic consequences that will not only affect the national economic with e.g. business forced into foreclosure but will also affect the private finances of natives within countries due to an increase of unemployment caused by companies going into foreclosure.
With the spread of COVID-19 we all have a significant role to play in the spread of the virus in order to help mitigate it and stay safe while the pandemic rage on.
What is COVID-19?
COVID-19 is a newly discovered virus which is a member of the coronavirus family. The virus mostly circulates among animals such as birds, cats, bats, pigs. In events that the virus jumps from animal to human it causes respiratory tract infections that can be both mild or lethal. As of today, there are seven coronavirus that are known to cause human disease, four of which are mild and three that have more serious outcomes. The three coronavirus that have more serious outcomes are:
- SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome), discovered 2002 in southern China and disappeared 2004
- MERS (Middle East Respiratory Syndrome), discovered 2012 in Saudi Arabia and still remains in circulation in camels
- COVIP-19, recently discovered in December 2019 in Wuhan, Central China
Symptoms caused by COVID-19
According to the World Health Organization (WHO) symptoms of COVID-19 are:
- Difficulty breathing or Shortness of breath
- Sore throat
- Runny nose
These symptoms may appear between two to fourteen days after contracting it, they can range from very mild to severe. Note some people may not carry any symptoms, making it even more important to act with precaution as these people may be spreading the virus without knowing.
If the symptoms get worse or last longer than seven days, it is advised that you contact a health centre. For proper steps to be taken Immediately call, Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), 24/7 toll-free number 0800 970 000 10. Do not self-medicate. For more information on proper measures to take read NCDC recommendations.
I have flu like symptoms, what should I do?
The best advice to heed in order to stay safe during the COVIC-19 period is to follow proper measures advised by NCDC.
It is important and safer to practice social distancing and proper hygiene in order not to spread the virus any further.
Older people and people of any age with underlying medical conditions such as for instance diabetes, HIV, heart disease, asthma etc. are at a higher risk of developing complications if contracting COVID-19.
There is an ongoing pattern of young people disregarding authorities advise and not taking enough precaution to not spread the virus. It is important to keep in mind that the virus does not know age, race or discriminate; meaning even though you may be healthy enough to survive an infection, people within your surrounding may not be as lucky. In order to keep the spread of the virus at a minimum and stay safe during the COVIC-19, it is important for Nigerians to follow recommendations from authorities such as NCDC, Nigerian Federal Minister of Health and WHO.
What can you do to help minimise the spread of COVID-19 in Nigeria
COVID-19 is an infectious disease that spreads primarily through discharge from the nose or droplets of saliva from an infected person sneezing and coughing. It is therefore important to practice respiratory etiquette by for instance coughing into a flexed elbow or napkin/paper tissue that is immediately disposed. See picture below with advise on how to stay clear from and how to minimize the spread of the virus.
- Wash hands with soap using warm water for at least 30 seconds. If hands are not visible dirty an alcohol-based hand sanitizer can be used.
- Cough or sneeze into a flexed elbow or tissue. Dispose the tissue into a closed bin immediately.
- Avoid touching eyes, mouth and nose
- Maintain a 2 meters distance from yourself and anyone sneezing or coughing.
- Practice social distance by avoiding both small and large gatherings for instance church service, work, family gathering, grocery shopping, public transport etc. if you experience flu like symptoms.
- Clean and disinfect surfaces used on a daily basis.
What is the proper way of washing or sanitizing hand?
It is recommended that hands are washed for at least 40 seconds using soap and warm water. When using an alcohol-based handrub, this should be done for at least 20 seconds.
See pictures below on how to properly clean hand with either soap or hand sanitizer.
How to hand wash with soap & How to hand rub with hand sanitiser. Picture courtesy of WHO.
Where can I get updated information on COVID-19 in Nigeria and in the rest of the world?
For accurate information on the virus, follow advice from reliable institutes and sources. For updated information on the virus and the situation within Nigeria check NCDC or Nigerian Federal Minister of Health.
For updated information on the situation around the world check WHO.
Any other information circulation around should be revised with a critical eye. There is a lot of misleading and faulty information circulation around on social media apps and the internet. This information can also be crosschecked with reliable institutions in order to avoid spreading misleading or faulty information.
Get information from reliable sources and stay safe during COVIC-19:
Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC)
Federal Ministry of Health, Nigeria
World Health Organization
Updated, detailed statistics on COVID-19 internationally from John Hopkins University