…may record increase in confirmed cases with new testing strategy

The Edo State Government has said it is tracking the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) by ramping up screening and testing activities across various locations in the state to forestall community transmission.

The government said the state’s strategy to test more persons may lead to increase in confirmed COVID-19 cases, noting that the exercise would provide data to better curtail the spread of the pandemic in the state.

Special Adviser to the Governor on Media and Communication Strategy, Mr. Crusoe Osagie, said the state government is bracing up to get a clearer sense of the COVID-19 outbreak in the state, which is why it has adopted a strategy that would ascertain the spread of the virus among the state’s population, so as to better calibrate its intervention programme.

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The government said with its screening and testing activities, it is increasing the probability of detecting asymptomatic COVID-19 cases in the state, thereby providing data to ensure community transmission is forestalled in the state

According to him, “In furtherance of the state government’s commitment to achieve a better understanding of the outbreak of COVID-19 in our state, we have undertaken to grab the bull by the horns and conduct a blitz-styled screening and testing exercise. We are going after COVID-19 cases. This would throw up the number of infected persons in the population so that we respond rapidly to ensure we do not record community transmission.”

“At the moment, screening and testing is ongoing in the 18 Local Government Areas (LGA), while mobile post screening exercise has kicked off in Oredo LGA. With these, we are closing in with testing from different fronts. As these are happening, samples are being collected and sent to the testing centres in Irrua and Benin. We expect that more confirmed cases would be reported as a result of these,” he said.

He noted that designated Primary Healthcare Centres (PHCs) and private hospitals in the local government areas have been certified to conduct screening.