Nigerian health experts have tasked the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) to probe available COVID-19 vaccines more deeply than it is currently doing before giving approval for their use in the country.
The former National Publicity Secretary of Association of Medical Laboratory Scientists of Nigeria, AMLSN, Dr Casmir Ifeanyi charged NAFDAC to be more technical in approach, expressing concern over the manner of approval of COVID-19 vaccines.
NAFDAC, announced approval of the AstraZeneca vaccine from Korea, and the conditional approval of the Russian Sputnik V vaccine Last week.
“I saw it as a mockery the other day when NAFDAC said they are undergoing WHO accreditation and validation. My concern is that NAFDAC is not a producing facility, NAFDAC is a regulated facility. So is the accreditation and validation for vaccine production or for the purpose of the regulation? NAFDAC is not a company, it’s a regulatory agency.
“I think NAFDAC is too much in hurry to approve the Russian vaccine that is largely questioned by the World Health Organisation, WHO. Sometimes when you rush to do things you make mistakes. I expect NAFDAC to be technical in approach.
“The approval of various types of vaccines by NAFDAC especially those not currently available in the country is questionable. Is this approval based on clinical evidence validation of these vaccines in the country, or the approval is just based on literature review?
“If it’s on literature review, it is unacceptable because of individual variation. So I will want NAFDAC to come clean as to how they made this approval. They should also publish the scientific evidence justifying the approval because we do not have that in the public domain yet,” he added.
According to Ifeanyi, NAFDAC should go beyond relying on what the manufacturers present to give approval.
The NAFDAC approval of the Russian COVID-19 vaccine might be that there is a programme by the Russian government to give the vaccine to Nigeria, otherwise it is not in the front line of vaccines that can use, it is not even in the vaccine portfolio for EU vaccine passport.
Ifeanyi explained that it was important for Nigeria not to leave its gate too widely open by such arbitrary approvals.
“A time will come that the government would hands-off treatment of Covid-19, leaving the patients to care for themselves, and individuals would be bringing in all types of vaccines to be approved for use in the country.
“I think it’s important we stick with the guideline and what we do hereby covid-19 should be what dictated by WHO, and countries in EU. It is important that government spare no resource in acquiring vaccines for Nigerians.”
Ifeanyi who also appealed to the federal government to use appropriated funds in the 2021 budget for the procurement of the COVID-19 vaccine, said that the country cannot afford to rely on donor agency in the face of rising cases of the delta variant.
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Gombe test 256 NYSC officials, 300 corps members for Covid-19
256 NYSC officials managing activities at the Gombe State Orientation Camp have been tested for COVID-19, while about 300 batch B Prospective Corps Members have already taken the COVID-19 test.
The Public Relations Officer and Head of Press, Gombe NYSC, Margaret Dakama, made this known, noting that the screening and registration exercise was going well.
According to the Gombe NYSC officials, none of those tested so far returned a positive COVID-19 result.
The three-week orientation exercise commenced on Tuesday in Amada, Akko Local Government Area in Gombe, and would last till August 16, 2021.
The expected number of prospective corps members in the camp is 1,750.
Dakama noted that the NYSC registration and screening process would continue till Friday. She however noted that “About 256 camp officials underwent the COVID 19 Rapid Diagnostic Test and 300 prospective Corps members.
“The 300 corps members have been vaccinated. So far, no positive case. The registration will last till Friday 30th July, 2021,” Dakama noted.
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India reports 29,689 new COVID-19 cases, lowest since March
India has reported 29,689 new coronavirus cases in the last 24 hours, the lowest daily rise since March 17, the health ministry said on Tuesday.
India’s total of 31.44 million infections now ranks second only to the United States.
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COVID-19: Global cases hit 193,687,980
The novel coronavirus has killed at least 4,156,164 people since the outbreak emerged in China in December 2019.
READ ALSO: Global COVID-19 cases surpass 75 million
This was according to statistic from the official sources on Sunday.
At least 193,687,980 cases of coronavirus have been registered. The vast majority have recovered, though some have continued to experience symptoms weeks or even months later.
The figures are based on daily reports provided by health authorities in each country. They exclude revisions made by other statistical organisations, which show that the number of deaths is much higher.
The World Health Organisation estimates that the pandemic’s overall toll could be two to three times higher than official records, due to the excess mortality that is directly and indirectly linked to COVID-19.
A large number of the less severe or asymptomatic cases also remain undetected, despite intensified testing in many countries.
On Saturday, 8,471 new deaths and 525,589 new cases were recorded worldwide.
Based on the latest reports, the countries with the highest figures for new deaths were Indonesia with 1,266 new deaths, followed by Brazil with 1,108 and Russia with 779.
The United States is the worst-affected country with 610,850 deaths from 34,430,608 cases.
After the US, the hardest-hit countries are Brazil with 549,448 deaths from 19,670,534 cases, India with 420,551 deaths from 31,371,901 cases, Mexico with 238,316 deaths from 2,741,983 cases, and Peru with 195,795 deaths from 2,102,904 cases.
The country with the highest number of deaths compared to its population is Peru with 594 fatalities per 100,000 inhabitants, followed by Hungary with 311, Bosnia-Herzegovina with 295, the Czech Republic with 283, and the Republic of North Macedonia with 263.
Latin America and the Caribbean overall has 1,356,077 deaths from 40,176,616 cases, Europe 1,194,431 deaths from 57,396,849 infections, and Asia 646,037 deaths from 43,599,224 cases.
The United States And Canada has reported 637,394 deaths from 35,856,595 cases, Africa 163,675 deaths from 6,443,764 cases, Middle East 157,239 deaths from 10,139,499 cases, and Oceania 1,311 deaths from 75,442 cases.
As a result of corrections by national authorities or late publication of data, the figures updated over the past 24 hours may not correspond exactly to the previous day’s tallies.
India reports 39,742 new COVID-19 cases
India has reported 39,742 new COVID-19 cases in the last 24 hours, a government statement said on Sunday.
The COVID-19 death toll rose by 535 deaths in the last 24 hours, with the total reaching 420,551, health ministry data showed.
Covid-19: Nigeria confirms 272 new cases
The Nigerian Centre for Disease Control, NCDC, has confirmed 272 new cases of Covid-19 on the 24th of July,2021.
Till date, 170895 cases have been confirmed, 164788 cases have been discharged and 2132 deaths have been recorded in 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory
The 272 new cases are reported from 9 states- Lagos (182), Rivers (34), Ondo(24), Oyo (10), Abia (7), Ogun (7), Ekiti (5), Delta (2), and Plateau(1)
A multi-sectoral national emergency operations centre (EOC) activated at Level 2, continues to coordinate the national response activities according to the NCDC website.
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