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COVID-19: NCDC receives 4 ambulances from Aliko Dangote foundation for response activities in Lagos

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The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC)  said it has received four ambulances from the Aliko Dangote Foundation to support the COVID-19 pandemic response activities in Lagos State.

The NCDC disclosed this through its verified Twitter account on Saturday.

It expressed gratitude for collective efforts demonstrated by the government and private sector in response to the Coronavirus  outbreak.

The agency stated that it had also received support from Airtel Nigeria and

 

MTN Nigeria

 

to ensure mobile users were

 

receiving verified information on the COVID-19 pandemic in the country.

It added that this was an important strategy to reach more Nigerians, especially those with limited access to the internet.

The Nigeria News Agency, reports that the NCDC through its verified Twitter account, said that as at 4. 00p.m of March 28, Lagos

 

had additional seven new cases, while Benue recorded its first confirmed case.

According to it, this brings the total confirmed cases in the country to 89, three had been discharged, while one death was recorded in the country.

It added that currently, Lagos has 59; Abuja- 14, Ogun Three, Ekiti– One, Oyo– Three, Edo- Two, Bauchi-Two, while Benue, Osun and Rivers have One case respectively.

Edited By: Chioma Ugboma and Isaac Ukpoju
(NAN)

Economy

Portugal quadruples funds to companies fighting COVID-19 pandemic

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The Ministry of Territorial Cohesion of Portugal has quadrupled the amount offered to companies that modified their production to support the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic to 108 million euros (around $120.2 million).

This measure was taken, according to the ministry, to encourage the production of materials considered essential to control the novel coronavirus, such as visors, masks and alcohol gel.

“The non-repayable support of Portugal 2020 regional operational programmes was extended to 108 million euros, aimed at companies that converted their production to respond to the challenges of the pandemic,’’ the ministry said in a statement.

Investments were made through the Norte 2020, Centro 2020, Lisbon 2020, Alentejo 2020 and CRESC Algarve programmes, which are part of an incentive system for productive innovation and finance around 440 projects.

According to official data, so far contracts have been signed with 195 production initiatives, which allocated 40 million euros (around $44.5 million) from European funds, including the Portugal 2020 programme (PT 2020), a partnership between Portugal and the European Commission.

In addition, a programme to support scientific research in the fight against the pandemic was launched, which is projected to invest 13 million euros (nearly $14.5 million).

Already, three million euros (around $3.3 million) have been allocated to 18 research projects.

Portugal has reported a total of 32,700 cases and 1,424 deaths from COVID-19, with 14 new deaths and 200 more cases recorded over the last 24 hours, the health authorities said. 

AIB

Edited By: Abdulfatah Babatunde (NAN)

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Foreign

Restaurants reopen in Turkey’s Istanbul amid easing COVID-19 restrictions

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Restaurants and cafes reopened on Monday in Turkey‘s biggest city Istanbul as the government is relaxing COVID-19 restrictions.

With full preparations made for the lunchtime, owners of restaurants located in the business quarters of the city were eager to serve the thousands of public workers who also returned to their offices on Monday.

Most restaurant owners planned to call it a day in the afternoon because they believed the streets would be empty after people go off work at six o’clock in the evening.

“I don’t think restaurants will stay open for dinner for a while,” the owner of a small restaurant in the commercial Karakoy neighborhood, who didn’t give his name, told Xinhua.

Restaurants located in the city’s tourist areas tend to remain closed until international flights are resumed.

In Turkey, parks, beaches, daycare centers, kindergartens, libraries, sports facilities, and museums also resumed operation on Monday, and the ban on domestic travel was lifted.

In late May, the Turkish government decided to further ease restrictions over the COVID-19 pandemic after infection cases were reported to have dropped over the past weeks.

(XINHUA)

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Foreign

Roundup: Lao students return to schools as gov’t further eases COVID-19 restrictions

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Most Lao students returned to schools on Tuesday as the Lao government further eased its precautionary COVID-19 restrictions.

Preschools, kindergartens and the remaining classes of primary and secondary schools (whose final-year classes resumed earlier on May 18) have reopened on Tuesday.

Final-year classes at technical colleges, pedagogy colleges and universities have also reopened on the same day, while other remaining classes are instructed to reopen on June 15.

Since May 18, the graduating grade students of primary and secondary schools have gone back to their classrooms, to prepare for tests to gain admission into higher education levels, according to an earlier announcement from the Prime Minister’s Office on May 15.

School administrators must implement precautionary measures to prevent further outbreaks of COVID-19, which was recommended by the Ministry of Education and Sports and the National Taskforce Committee for COVID-19 Prevention and Control.

The measures for reopening schools include school administrators keeping their premises clean by cleaning classrooms and grounds and spraying disinfectant around their facilities to reduce the risk of infections.

Administrative staff, teachers and students must wear face masks at all times at school, and parents must also wear masks while picking up their children.

The Lao government also allows normal transport of goods across international borders from Tuesday. Organizations of all forms of sport competitions with no spectators, night markets and cinemas are also permitted to reopen.

The Prime Minister’s Office said the easing of restrictions was temporary and that if further cases of COVID-19 were found, the rules would be reimposed in the province where the infection was detected. If clusters of infections occur in two or more provinces, the lockdown will be re-introduced nationwide.

Restrictions have been further relaxed given that there have been no new confirmed COVID-19 cases in Laos for 50 consecutive days as of Monday. Sixteen of the 19 patients who contracted the virus have been discharged from hospitals.

The Lao Health Ministry announced its first two confirmed COVID-19 cases at its daily press conference on March 24.

(XINHUA)

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Foreign

Nepal faces shortage of vital medical supplies over surging COVID-19 cases

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Nepal’s Department of Health Services said it does not have a single ventilator in store for the hospitals if critical COVID-19 cases surge amid rapidly increasing cases recently.

Ventilator is the life saving equipment vital for the survival of critically ill patients, which the Himalayan country lacks in various hospitals.

“We don’t have any ventilator at our store at the moment. We are initiating the process of procuring 10 new ventilators,” Bhogendra Raj Dotel, director of Supply Management section at the Department of Health Services under the Ministry of Health and Population, told Xinhua early this week.

According to the Nepal’s Ministry of Health and Population, the nation currently has only 840 ventilators across the country.

Although the Health Ministry planned to buy 235 new ventilators, hardly any of them have arrived, according to Adhikari. “We also have not received ventilators from foreign donors who have supported us with surgical masks, personal protective equipment and Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) test kits, rapid test kits among others.”

The ministry said in its Health Sector Emergency Response Plan against the COVID-19 pandemic unveiled last month that there are 840 ventilators, 26,930 hospital beds and 1,595 beds with intensive care unit facilities in 194 hospitals.

“As these facilities, particularly impatient beds and ventilators, are being used for other conditions or impatient care services, we assume only one third of it could be available for COVID-19 cases,” the Health Emergency Response Plan states.

With a record-high 239 new cases on Monday, the total count of COVID-19 in Nepal has reached 1,811. After a slow start, almost all cases had appeared in the last one month, according to the ministry.

The Himalayan country has already witnessed eight deaths from the pandemic. As the number of cases is rising rapidly, Adhikari said the rise in serious cases that require ventilator support could not be ruled out.

In the worst case scenario, Nepal expects over 10,000 cases of COVID-19 with a requirement of keeping over 500 patients at intensive care units and over 1,500 at the hospitals with oxygen support, according to the Health Sector Emergency Response Plan.

Along with the rise in the number of cases, the Nepali government is also struggling to manage enough the PCR test kits and the Viral Transport Mediums (VTMs) which are used to collect throat swab samples for testing.

“There are just over 50,000 PCR kits while the number of VTMs is just over 10,000,” according to Adhikari. “As PCR kits are in constant supply, it may not be a problem,” he said. “We also hope to get VTMs from local manufacturers too, which will offset the current shortage.”

(XINHUA)

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Foreign

India COVID-19 death toll rises to 5,598 as total cases reach 198,706

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India’s federal health ministry on Tuesday morning reported 204 new deaths and 8,171 positive cases during the past 24 hours across the country, taking the number of deaths to 5,598 and total cases to 198,706.

According to ministry officials, 95,527 people have been discharged from hospitals after showing improvement.

“The number of active cases in the country right now is 97,581,” said the information.

The 5th phase of a nationwide lockdown came into force from Monday, marking several relaxations and reopening in a phased manner.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced the nationwide lockdown on March 25 to contain the spread of COVID-19 and break the chain of infection.

(XINHUA)

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Foreign

Indian state Maharashtra crosses mark of 70,000 COVID-19 cases, financial capital Mumbai crosses 40,000 mark

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India’s western state of Maharashtra and the state’s political capital Mumbai crossed the 70,000 and 40,000 marks of confirmed COVID-19 cases respectively, as per the official update late on Monday.

Maharashtra is the worst affected Indian state accounting for close to 38 percent or 70,013 cases in the country, while India’s financial capital Mumbai has now turned into the epic center accounting for over 22 percent or 40,877 cases in India.

The death toll in the state rose to 2,362 after 76 more fatalities including 40 from Mumbai were reported in the past 24 hours.

Several districts in the state with nil cases have seen a spike in cases due to reverse migration from urban hubs like Mumbai and Pune back to their native homes during the past two months of the lockdown.

The western state had extended its lockdown by further one more month till June 30 with some relaxations but the under-funded health care infrastructure and poor living conditions in the city’s slums have acted as a boost to the spread of virus.

To further add to the stress, the coastal districts of the state including Mumbai city are on high alert due to the in-coming cyclone, which is closing in and expected to land on Wednesday evening.

India’s federal health ministry on Monday morning reported 230 new deaths from the COVID-19 and 8,392 more positive cases cross the country, taking the number of deaths to 5,394 and total cases to 190,535.

(XINHUA)

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Foreign

New Zealand confirms no new case of COVID-19 for 11 consecutive days

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New Zealand reported no new case of COVID-19 on Tuesday for 11 consecutive days, with the combined total of confirmed and probable cases staying at 1,504, according to the Ministry of Health.

The total number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 reported to the World Health Organization remained at 1,154, said a ministry statement.

The number of people who have recovered from COVID-19 remained unchanged at 1,481, with only one case remaining active, it said.

The number of COVID-19 related deaths in New Zealand remained at 22, with no additional deaths, it said, adding there is no one in New Zealand receiving hospital-level care for COVID-19.

New Zealanders can be assured that our testing capacity remains high and that testing at the border and in our communities will continue to be an essential part of our COVID-19 elimination strategy,” the statement said.

Regarding the gatherings at COVID-19 Alert Level 2, Director-General of Health Ashley Bloomfield said in the statement, “We’re aware of several large gatherings in New Zealand yesterday to recognize the tragic death of

“Anyone” href=”# George Floyd in the USA.”

“Anyone”> George Floyd in the USA.”

“Anyone

who attended these gatherings or who is planning to be at other upcoming events and feels they may be at risk by coming into close contact with people they don’t know, should take a cautious approach and seek advice,” Bloomfield said.

Whatever the Alert Level in New Zealand, it’s clear COVID-19 will continue to be a global threat for some time and it’s important we remain vigilant both as individuals and as a country,” he said, reminding people to observe physical distancing, seek appropriate health advice, and stay at home if feeling unwell.

“There’s currently no evidence of community transmission in New Zealand so at this time, quarantine for 14 days after attending one of these outdoor events is not required,” he added.

The current Alert Level 2 rules require gatherings of no more than 100 people where the people need to be physically distanced.

(XINHUA)

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Foreign

Mexico’s COVID-19 death toll surpasses 10,000

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Mexico’s death toll from COVID-19 reached 10,167 on Monday after an increase of 237 deaths on the previous day, its Health Ministry said.

Meanwhile, the country recorded 2,771 new cases, taking its total infections to 93,435.

Mexico is second only to Brazil in Latin America over COVID-19 deaths.

The Mexican government has announced it will ease restrictions in three stages to reopen the economy.

(XINHUA)

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Foreign

Brazil’s COVID-19 death toll nears 30,000

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Brazil has registered a single-day increase of 623 COVID-19 deaths, raising the national death toll to 29,937, the health ministry said on Monday.

Over the last 24 hours, authorities have detected 12,247 new infections, taking its total to 526,447, while 211,080 patients have recovered.

Brazil’s largest state Sao Paulo, the epicenter of the country’s outbreak where the first known infection was detected on Feb. 26, has seen 7,667 deaths and 111,296 confirmed cases, prompting authorities to extend lockdown measures until June 15.

Brazil’s second largest outbreak is in Rio de Janeiro state, where 54,530 cases have so far been reported with 5,462 deaths.

(XINHUA)

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Contact US: editor @nnn.com.ng, nnnnews247 @gmail.com

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