COVID cases may rise during holiday season, NCDC warns

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The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has warned that COVID-19 infections may rise during the holiday season.

Ifedayo Adetifa, NCDC director general, in an interview with Punch, said the expected rise may occur due to an increase in travel.

He added that the agency, however, expects that there would be a decrease in hospitalisation.

“We are prepared to see that there may be a bump in cases just because of the increase in travel and the number of people returning. What we may not expect to see is an increasing number of people who are sick,” he said.

Adetifa said although Omicron remains the dominant COVID strain in Nigeria, vaccination and previous COVID-19 infections have provided some degrees of immunity.

“Omicron took over as the dominant variant in November and December last year, and it has refused to go anywhere. Other minor variants have emerged, but Omicron remains the most dominant,” he said.

“The population has quite a bit of immunity due to vaccination, previous COVID-19 infection, or repeated COVID-19 infection. So COVID-19 is not new. The Omicron is not new like it was in November.

 “If you look at our numbers, we haven’t lost people for a while. Even if every single death is a great disaster for people’s families or friends, it’s not anything like the Delta variant when we had a big problem.”

According to the NCDC, Nigeria has so far recorded 266,283 COVID cases and 3,155 deaths.

 


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