- Nigeria has only five laboratories in 2 geopolitical zones in the country that can test for coronavirus
- This is raising concerns as the country has 12 confirmed cases and numerous suspected cases yet to be confirmed
- The southeast, the northwest, northeast and north-central zones do not have testing centres; only the southwest and the south south have
As coronavirus spreads in Nigeria with 12 confirmed cases, there are concerns that the country does not have enough testing centres to handle an outbreak.
Daily Trust reports that there are no testing centres in four out of the six geopolitical zones in the country.
Legit.ng gathers that the southeast, the northwest, northeast and north-central zones do not have testing centres.
The situation is reportedly raising concerns among millions of Nigerians who are resident in the 19 states under the four geopolitical zones.
There are currently five testing centres in the country located in the southwest and the south south.
There are two federal laboratories in Lagos and one in Osun state. The is another laboratory in Edo state (south south), and the remaining one in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
The laboratories certified for the coronavirus test include the NCDC National Reference Laboratory, Abuja; the Irrua Specialist Teaching Hospital in Edo state; the Virology Laboratory in the Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH); the Nigeria Institute for Medical Research (NIMR); and the Lagos African Centre of Excellence for Genomics of Infectious Disease in Osun state.
Daily Trust reports that most of the testing centres were being overwhelmed as some Nigerians who are panicking want to check their status even without showing any sign of the disease.
The newspaper notes that the only state-owned laboratory testing centre in Lagos state is located at the Mainland Hospital where the infectious disease hospital (IDH) is located.
Many people have been reportedly tested at the centre free of charge.
The Senate had earlier complained about the lack of testing centres in some geopolitical zones, prompting the Senate President Ahmad Lawan to call on the federal government to establish more testing centres particularly in zones that have none.
Earlier, Legit.ng reported that Akin Abayomi, the Lagos state commissioner for health, on Thursday, March 19, confirmed that the Italian national who brought the deadly coronavirus to Nigeria has now tested negative to the virus.
Abayomi disclosed this at a news conference while giving an update on the outbreak.
The commissioner explained that the Italian national who was the first confirmed case in the country had tested negative to the disease.
Abayomi stated the index case, who has been receiving treatment at the Infectious Disease Hospital (IDH) Yaba, would not be discharged until a second test is carried out within 48 hours and the result is negative before he can be allowed to go.
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