Nigerians should expect COVID-19 vaccines by January – Ehanire – Newstrends
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Nigerians should expect COVID-19 vaccines by January – Ehanire

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Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, has said the country expects to receive the first batch of vaccines meant to combat COVID-19 by January.

He said this on Wednesday while addressing State House correspondents after the week’s virtual Federal Executive Council FEC meeting.

Ehanire further disclosed that the country was looking to get the vaccines from more than just one source, adding that the Ministry of Health had already commenced bilateral talks with manufacturing companies and countries that have developed solutions.

He, however, said storage of some types of vaccines and cost of storage were factors being considered in shopping for the products.

The minister said, “We have a technical working group working on the question of the vaccine. We have signed up with the World Health Organisation and GAVI for access to vaccines immediately they are available. But you know that these vaccines are new and the producers are, first of all, not giving any indemnity.

“The big countries where these vaccines are manufactured are of course giving themselves the priority to serve their own citizens first and we hope that the pressure from the World Health Organisation and GAVI (Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunisation) will be able to get a reserve for other countries which themselves are not manufacturing and be able to attend to what we signed up to; we signed up for the advanced market participation of the COVACS.

“If we are able to get our own, I think it should be by January, but there are two types of vaccines, as you have heard; there are those that haven to be in ultra-deep freezers, the MRNA types of vaccines, freezers that must give you at least -80 degrees. There’s another type that can be in a deep freezer of -20 and there’s another type that can be in a refrigerator of -2 degrees, which is regular refrigerator.”

He also said, “The one that is a regular refrigerator is easy in that you have many of that kind of refrigerators all over our country. -20 will also be easy because we have freezers, but the ultra-cold freezers we hardly have any in our country, therefore to receive and store those ultra-cold vaccines will require that we go purchase those ultra-cold freezers.

“So we are working on the costing and it might be which one we get first. We have to remember again that we have over 200 million citizens and finding a way to get enough to take care of our citizens. That means if we are able to get the vaccine that works well and does not cost us too much or cost of storage and delivery, that’s the one we’ll like.

“We are also having bilateral discussions, talking with manufacturers, some of them have written to us that they want to have talks with us, I think one is already having discussions in the Ministry of Health, the one that British and Russia team are putting together.”

He said the FG was working with them “because if we cannot get enough from one source, we should be able to get from other sources. So, we are looking at multiple sources. We had a conversation with United Arab Emirates. The ambassador came to see us and told us that they are buying vaccines from China and had tested them.

“So, they said they are introducing them to us. So, we said we would listen to them because the one that is effective and healthy in those countries and is available is the one we shall bring and that has also proven to be safe.”

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Cholera hits Ogun, kills one, five hospitalised

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Cholera hits Ogun

Cholera hits Ogun, kills one, five hospitalised

The cholera outbreak ravaging Lagos State has spread to neighbouring Ogun state, killing at least one person.

The deceased, a 62-year-old woman, was killed by the deadly ailment in Ijebu-Igbo, Ijebu-North Local Government Area of the south west State.

It’s gathered that the woman contracted cholera while caring for her infected child, who is now hospitalised.

Dr. Tomi Coker, the Commissioner for Health, who confirmed the incident, said it happened on three days ago.

He said “A 62-year-old woman died and five persons were hospitalised. It happened in Ijebu-Igbo in the Ijebu-North local government area of the state.”

The chairman of the Nigerian Medical Association, NMA, in the state, Dr. Kunle Ashimi, in a press conference on Thursday, reiterated the dangers of the malignant disease.

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He noted that impact of cholera is widespread and has affected 30 states across the country, including Ogun.

He disclosed that cases would be treated free of charge at designated facilities and urged the populace to imbibe preventive measures against the spread of cholera.

Ashimi said: “Such patients will be transported to and treated free at the facilities designated for the management of cholera cases across the state.

“We use this opportunity to appeal to our people to imbibe preventive measures for the prevention of the spread of Cholera, including avoiding open defecation, avoiding indiscriminate refuse dumping, washing hands regularly, washing fruits and vegetables well before consuming and treating water before consuming it either by boiling or treating with chemical purifying agents.

“We advocate that where there is no wherewithal to do this, two drops of plain household bleach in 1 litre of water is a good alternative. We also implore schools to monitor food, fruit and snack vendors around the schools to ensure that they practice proper hygiene. As well, schools should reintroduce hand washing stations like was done during the COVID-19 period.”

Cholera hits Ogun, kills one, five hospitalised

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Storing cooked food in refrigerator more than three days unhealthy – NAFDAC

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Director-General of NAFDAC, Mojisola Adeyeye

Storing cooked food in refrigerator more than three days unhealthy – NAFDAC

Refrigerating cooked food for more than three days is dangerous and unhealthy, the National Agency for Food and Administration and Control, NAFDAC, has said.

The Director General of the Prof Mojisola Adeyeye of the agency made this known on Tuesday as part of the 2024 World Food Safety Day.

She advised Nigerians to refrain from keeping cooked food in the refrigerator for more than three days.

In a statement signed by the agency’s Resident Media Consultant, Sayo Akintola, on Tuesday, the agency stated that cooked food refrigerated for days will be contaminated by disease-causing pathogens, leading to foodborne diseases that can lead to death.

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Parts of the statement read: “She (NAFDAC FG) urged Nigerians to refrain from storing cooked food in the refrigerator for more than three days, warning that cooked food stored in the refrigerator for days is susceptible to contamination by disease-causing pathogens, key agents of foodborne diseases that can lead to death.”

Speaking at the 2024 World Food Safety Day with the theme, ‘Food Safety: Prepare for the Unexpected’, the DG appealed to stakeholders in the food supply chain to take conscious efforts to create a food safety culture in their operations to minimize food hazards and risks that could compromise food safety.

She noted that food safety is not only important for public health but also for economic development, adding that everyone from producers to consumers must play their part to ensure food safety.

“Let us all stay true to the statements ‘food safety is everyone’s business’ and ‘food safety is a shared responsibility’ as we mark this year’s World Food Safety Day.

Storing cooked food in refrigerator more than three days unhealthy – NAFDAC

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Reps, NAFDAC lift ban on sale of sachet alcoholic beverages

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Reps, NAFDAC lift ban on sale of sachet alcoholic beverages

The House of Representatives and the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) have decided to lift the ban on the sale and consumption of sachet alcoholic beverages in the country temporarily.

This decision will remain until the economy recovers fully. NAFDAC initially banned these beverages due to concerns about drug abuse, especially among young Nigerians.

On February 7, 2024, the House mandated its committee to investigate the ban.

The decision to lift the ban temporarily followed a meeting between the House Committee and NAFDAC officials, as announced by Deputy House spokesman Philip Agbese.

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He said, “We all agreed at the meeting that at a certain stage in history, we must move on with our counterparts across the globe. Nevertheless, at the moment, we agreed with NAFDAC that there would be a temporary lifting of the ban until the economy regains its strength.”

Speaking on how the decision was arrived at, Agbese who represents Ado/Ogbadigbo/Okpokwu Federal Constituency, Benue State, said, “We had engagements with stakeholders, including NAFDAC and the organised private sector involved. Resolutions were reached at that meeting based on the submissions made by the stakeholders, civil society organisations and other interested parties.

“Part of the recommendations before the parliament was that the ban was not timely given the current economic realities and coupled with the fact that the five-year moratorium granted by NAFDAC to the private sector, the advent of COVID-19 and other economic realities we are facing today did not permit the operators in the industry to comply with their terms.”

Reps, NAFDAC lift ban on sale of sachet alcoholic beverages

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