A file photo of the NCDC Director-General, Chikwe Ihekweazu.
The number of health workers who have tested positive for coronavirus (COVID-19) has increased to 812.
The Director-General of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu, disclosed this on Tuesday at the briefing of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 which held in Abuja.
He explained that 29 officials of the NCDC were among the health workers who got exposed to COVID-19 in the line of duty.
Dr Ihekweazu said, “We’ve had 812 healthcare workers infected; they are not just numbers.
“Twenty-nine of these (people) work with the NCDC. They are people I know; they have families, wives, children.”
He also spoke about the progress made so far by relevant authorities in the fight against COVID-19 in the country.
The NCDC boss noted that the total number of cases confirmed so far have exceeded the 10,000 mark, adding that Nigeria has the third-highest figure in Africa.
According to him, 60 per cent of the cases are in 20 local government areas spread across the nation.
He said, “The public health response is being strengthened as the measures restricting certain movements are being eased.
“Crossing that 10,000 was a significant event and every night when we work very hard to bring out those numbers, sometimes numbers begin to feel like what they are but you forget that there are people behind those numbers.”
Dr Ihekweazu urged Nigerians to be cautious of their daily activities, stressing that the nation has done well but still needs to put in more effort to win the war against COVID-19.
On the rising number of cases, he said, “It is very important for us to remember that these are people and as the NCDC, we engage with these people almost every day.
“When you engage with these people, it means a lot more to you than just the numbers. As we report on this every day, let’s remember that these are people; every single number there represents an individual.”