By Gabriel Enogholase BENIN – WITH the rise in number of confirmed cases of coronavirus (COVID-19) in Edo State, the state government has revved up Active Case Search (ACS) activities in over 542 rural and urban communities across the state, testing 1,367 residents and contact tracing over 933 others. Edo State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Patrick Okundia, who disclosed this to journalists in Benin weekend, reassured that the Governor Godwin Obaseki-led administration has put up measures to contain the COVID-19 pandemic in the state. He disclosed that the state was making steady progress in the management of the pandemic, saying that Edo has recorded successes in surveillance activities, including contact tracing, Persons of Interest (POI) tracking and active case search in the 18 local government councils. He, however, reiterated the need for citizens to present or report themselves through the Edo State COVID-19 toll-free response lines following any recent travel into the country, travel from high incident states or contact with confirmed cases. He disclosed that since the outbreak, the State has recorded a total of 1,334 suspected cases of COVID-19 and 144 confirmed cases spread across 13 LGAs, including Oredo (85), Esan West (4), Egor (17), Ovia North East (10), Ikpoba-Okha (17), Uhunmwode (3), Etsako Central (1), Esan South East (1), Akoko-Edo (1), Esan Central (1),Ovia South West (1), Owan East (1) and Esan North East (1) local government areas.
Okundia said, “The Edo State Government has continued to step up measures to contain the coronavirus pandemic, as we are committed to protecting our people. He said, “We, however, urge all residents to make themselves available for the ongoing massive screening and testing exercise across the state, as it will complement government’s efforts at curtailing the spread of the virus” “Also, we charge you to comply with all government directives. Stay at home and observe social distancing guidelines and other precautionary measures against the spread of the infectious disease, including regular handwashing with soap under running water and the use alcohol-based hand sanitisers. “Two new toll-free lines for COVID-19 response have been introduced by Edo State Government to strengthen the initial lines from the State Ministry of Health and the World Health Organisation (WHO) distributed at the onset of the outbreak. If you have any COVID-19 symptoms, please 08001235111 or 08002200110 for assistance”.