Suspected coronavirus patient tests negative in Zaria

The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control says it has extended its molecular laboratories with the capacity to detect Coronavirus Disease to six. Dr. Chikwe Ihekweazu, Director General of the NCDC, disclosed this to newsmen on Saturday in Abuja, while giving an update on COVID-19 in the country.

A resident of Zaria who returned from Lagos on Friday and was quarantined at the Gambo Sawaba General Hospital, Zaria on the suspicion that he was infected by coronavirus has been discharged on Wednesday.

This followed the receipt of his test result by the hospital management, which came out negative.

Iliyasu Mukhtar, an indigene of Dorayi, a suburb of the ancient city of Zaria, came back to Zaria from Lagos with fever and was having breathing challenges.

He was therefore rushed to the Gambo Sawaba General Hospital for medical attention where he was subsequently isolated for investigation.

Newsmen learnt that Mukhtar undertook the about 800 kilometer Lagos-Zaria journey in an open lorry, hence that contributed to his health challenges. This is contrary to the earlier information that he returned to Zaria on a motorcycle.

The test to confirm his COVID-19 status, according to Dr. Hussaina Adamu, the Chief Medical Director of the Gambo Sawaba General Hospital, was conducted in Kaduna.

She said: “The result came out negative. He therefore suffered from lower respiratory tract infection. His response to treatment was good and he is progressively improving. It is based on these that we have discharged him, but would be coming back to the hospital for further check up.”

Speaking with our correspondent, Mukhtar said while in Lagos, he was treated of fever but was advised to come back to Zaria for fear of the unknown.

He said the stigma he went through turned out to be his major frustration, saying that residents of his community decided to distance themselves from even the members of his household.

On her part, Dr. Adamu advised residents of Zaria to continue to adhere to the preventive measures put in place by both the federal and state governments and urged residents to report any suspected case to the relevant health facilities nearest to them.

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