The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) on Saturday recorded 176 new cases of COVID-19 which brought the total number of infections in Nigeria to 5621.
NCDC also said that five new patients have been confirmed dead in the country, bringing the total number of deaths to 176.
The 176 new cases were reported from 14 states: Lagos (95), Oyo (31), FCT (11), Niger (8),Borno (8), Jigawa (6), Kaduna (4), Anambra (3), Edo (2), Rivers (2), Nasarawa (2), Bauchi (2), Benue (1), Zamfara (1).
The NCDC noted that no new state reported a case in the last 24 hours.
The health agency said that as at May 16, 5621 cases have been confirmed with 3973 Active Cases, 1472 discharged cases and 176 deaths in 34 states and the Federal Capital Territory.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the NCDC said cloth masks could facilitate the spread of infectious diseases like COVID-19 if not handled properly.
Highlighting the Dos and Don’ts of “Cloth face Masks”, NCDC said that cloth face masks were a convenient substitute to medical face masks for the current global situation.
It said, however, that the Clothe masks should not be worn by individuals who were at a high risk for complications due to COVID-19.
According to the Centre, health care workers, people caring for the sick, experiencing respiratory symptoms like coughing and sneezing, with chronic medical conditions and the elderly should wear medical face masks.
“Do wash your hands frequently with soap under running water to avoid contamination.
”Do adhere to social distancing measures and stay at home as much as possible.
”Do wear a mask before leaving your home for essential services.
”Do wear masks made with at least 3 layers of fabric.
“Don’t use a cloth face mask on children under the age of 2 years.
”Don’t try on new masks from vendors or wear immediately after purchasing, wash before first use.
”Don’t reuse a cloth face mask before it has been washed and dried.
”Don’t leave a used face mask on uncleaned surfaces or in the reach of small children while not in use.
“Don’t pull down your mask to cough or sneeze. Use a tissue or your bent elbow over the mask until you can safely remove the mask for washing,” it stated.
NCDC said that a cloth face mask, made out of everyday fabric, could act as a barrier to respiratory droplets but cannot completely protect you from COVID-19.
It said that it was very important that Nigerians handled and cared for their clothe face mask properly to avoid further spread of the infectious agents.
“To protect yourselves and loved ones from COVID-19, cloth face masks must be worn in combination with, avoiding large gatherings, physical distancing by maintaining a distance of two metres between yourself and others.
“Regular handwashing with soap under running water. Frequent cleaning of surfaces with soap and water or disinfectants.
“Please adhere to the following guidelines for the use of cloth face masks, make sure the mask has been washed and is unused before first wear.
”Wash your hands with soap under running water before touching the mask. If water is not available, use a hand sanitiser.
“Cover your nose and mouth completely with the mask making sure it fits snuggly with no open gaps.
”Avoid touching or adjusting the mask while it is on. Wash or sanitise your hands before removing the mask by the straps.
“Wash the mask immediately with soap or detergent and allow to dry completely in the sun.
”Before re-use, iron the mask,” it advised.
NAN reports that COVID-19 was primarily spread through respiratory droplets through the coughing, sneezing and talking of an infected person.
It reports that in response to the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak, NCDC advised the use of face masks to help block the spread of respiratory droplets from person to person.
The Federal Government of Nigeria has since mandated the use of face masks in public, while restrictions on social and religious gatherings remain in placed.
It reports that due to the global shortage of medical face masks many countries were turning to alternatives to medical face masks for the general public. (NAN)