COVID-19: Patients without symptoms will be discharged after 14 days, says NCDC

COVID-19: Patients without symptoms will be discharged after 14 days, says NCDC

- The NCDC has reviewed its guidelines in managing COVID-19 patients in Nigeria

- Embedded in the new guidelines is that patients who have tested positive but are asymptomatic can be discharged after 14 days

- The NCDC says the changes are geared towards adapting to local circumstances

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The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has announced that patients who stop showing coronavirus symptoms will be discharged without waiting for a laboratory negative test.

This was revealed by the director-general of NCDC, Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu, who spoke at the daily briefing of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19, in Abuja on Thursday, June 5.

The key symptoms for coronavirus patients are high fever and respiratory distress.

The NCDC also said those who fail to show symptoms after testing positive will be discharged after 14 days.

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COVID-19: Patients without symptoms will be discharged after 14 days, says NCDC

The NCDC boss says the changes in the guidelines are geared towards adapting to local circumstances. Photo credit: PTF media team
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The move is part of the NCDC's new treatment protocols, suggesting that the agency might be overwhelmed.

The NCDC is also relying on a new finding in Singapore that showed that RNA detected beyond 10 days is no longer infectious as no viable virus is grown by viral culture.

RNA is the nucleic acid that is used in key metabolic processes for all steps of protein synthesis in all living cells and carries the genetic information of many viruses.

The NCDC said patients under this category will be asked to go home but advised to continue self-isolation one week after discharge.

Ihekweazu said: “If you are asymptomatic, you can be discharged 14 days after your first positive test. So, we no longer have to wait for a negative test to discharge.

“We are not encouraging that people be discharged while they are still symptomatic. We are talking about discharging people that are asymptomatic and have recovered.

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“At that point, you really don’t need more clinical interventions, even at home; you just need time to recover.”

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Meanwhile, the chairman, Imo state council of traditional rulers, Eze Samuel Agunwa Ohiri, has manufactured a five-minute coronavirus testing kit.

Ohiri an American-trained medical scientist said the feat was achieved in his medical factory located at Obi-Orodo in Mbaitoli local government area of the state.

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