Nigeria is currently reviewing some submitted local remedies for use in fighting Covid-19 to ascertain their efficacy and safety.
This was made known by the Minster of State for Health Sen. Olorunnimbe Mamora, during the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 daily press briefing on Wednesday in Abuja.
“We have received a few proposals for local remedies for the disease and these have been forwarded to the relevant agencies for evaluation.
“For a preparation to be approved for use in Nigeria, it must be subjected to safety, toxicological and efficacy tests as well as clinical trials,” he said.
Mamora noted that government would support every genuine efforts aimed at finding a local solution to the pandemic as part of Nigeria's contribution in the global efforts to find a cure for the disease.
He once again affirmed that for now, non pharmaceutical preventive approach is still the best strategy.
The minister also highlighted the still existing acute shortage of beds and isolation centres across the country. Presently, Nigeria has a total of 112 treatment and isolation centres with 5,324 beds.
“At present, we have a total of 112 treatment and isolation centres in all the 36 states and FCT with 5,324 beds. While only five states including the FCT have at least 300 beds as prescribed for isolation and treatment, 21 states have less than 100 bed spaces. As the number of confirmed cases increases, there is an urgent need to expand our treatment centres across the country,” the minister said.
Mamora called on state governors and philanthropists to take active and deliberate steps to scale up the number of beds for isolation and treatment of confirmed cases in their states.
The minister said that this became necessary as the country prepared to move into the next phase of the response, including the easing of the lockdown.
He added that the ministry had conducted a high level technical session on strategic outputs of Mid-Action Review (MAR) and identified priority activities for the next phase of the response.
“In addition, we have commenced development of sector specific advisories on re-opening. Training of health workers on case management is ongoing in more states,” he added.
In his address, the PTF National Coordinator, Dr Sani Aliyu, said that states were responsible for case management in the fight against COVID-19 the country.
Aliyu said that the Nigeria Center for Disease Control(NCDC) was also leading the efforts in designing and implementing national testing strategies to scale-up testing in Nigeria.