Yesterday, the sixth case of Covid-19 in Kaduna State was diagnosed. He is a male who worked as a gateman in the Mando area and recently returned from Lagos. He traveled to Kaduna on public transport and made contact with the authorities as his symptoms worsened. The patient has been evacuated to the state’s Infectious Disease Centre. He has no connection with the first five cases in the state.This case presents us with the nightmare scenario of possible community transmission of Covid-19 in the state.
It is vey difficult and complicated to trace the contacts of a patient who came from Lagos via public transport and has had some instance of local commuting since his arrival. The Rapid Response Team is trying its utmost to elicit from him a list of his contacts so that they can be traced and monitored.
He does not know who his fellow passengers from Lagos are, but the team is working to develop an idea of his local contacts in Kaduna, including any vehicles he commuted in and people he met at the hospital he visited and within his area.
It was in order to prevent and avert a scenario like this that the government has consistently appealed to the public to practice social distancing and directed commercial buses to carry no more than two passengers per row.
The government also outrightly banned motorcycle taxis and Keke Napeps because they do not satisfy the conditions for social distancing.
In addition, government reiterates its advice against large gatherings and congregational prayers. Now that there is a case of possible community transmission of Covid-19, residents must begin to take more seriously the quarantine conditions.
It is important to stay at home, go out only when absolutely necessary and practice personal hygiene, especially washing hands with soap and water regularly.
Residents should also observe respiratory hygiene.
The instances that have now being recorded of people spreading Covid-19 from one state toanotherfurther reinforces the need to stop all inter-state travel. People need to stay in one place and help reduce the spread of Covid-19.
These are dangerous times, but we can work together to stop this disease from spreading. It is cheaper and better to prevent Covid-19 than to catch it.
Dr. Amina Mohammed-Baloni
Commissioner of Health
Saturday, 11th April 2020
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