The Italian Coronavirus index case in Nigeria has been discharged after testing negative.
The patient, who tested positive for the disease on February 28, left the hospital on Friday night.
The man flew into Nigeria from Milan, Italy, on February 24. He had reportedly lodged at a hotel close to Murtala Muhammed International Airport in Ikeja, Lagos, before moving to Lafarge Africa Plc, Ewekoro in Ogun state, the next day.
He fell sick on the third day of his stay in the country and tested positive for the disease two days after.
Subsequently, 39 people who had contact with him were quarantined but one of them tested positive for the disease while others were discharged but the Nigerian who contracted the disease later recovered.
Commenting on the release of the man from the hospital, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, the governor, said the patient donated one unit of white blood (plasma) that would be used in treating other patients.
The patient with Akin Abayomi, Lagos commissioner for health, and health workers at the hospital shortly before he was discharged.
“The Italian gentleman who was the index case is now negative and is being discharged. Through a combined effort of Lagos State, Ogun State and Federal Health Authorities, we were able to limit the transmission of the virus to a single contact,” he said in a statement.
“This involved aggressive contact tracing and containment strategies. However we now have several new imported cases and we hope we can apply the same contact tracing strategy along with social distancing to slow down the outbreak which may be brewing from these new cases.
“The index patient consented to donating one unit of white blood ( plasma) before he was discharged today. The blood plasma is rich in antibody proteins that target #COVID19 virus.
“The white blood plasma is frozen in our Bio-bank and will be useful in handling new cases. The blood plasma will be beneficial for the treatment of new patients in the absence of a defined therapeutic drug for #COVID19 yet.
“The index patient appreciated the exceptional care and support given to him by staff of the mainland infectious Disease Hospital, Yaba, all members of the EOC/and the Lagos State government.
“The EOC team was extremely happy to bid the patient farewell. Once again, we like to convey the enthusiasm of our team to do the very best possible in handling incidents of Coronavirus.”
Nigeria currently has 12 confirmed cases of the disease, and is currently on the look out for over 3,000 people who had contact with the confirmed cases.
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