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What Is Nigeria's Covid-19 Strategy & Rationale? - Health - Nairaland

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What Is Nigeria's Covid-19 Strategy & Rationale? by 4Play(m): 11:59am On Mar 28, 2020
With the mass lockdowns being recommended by governments (state and Federal) across Nigeria, has anyone really thought through what we are aiming to achieve?

In the west, lockdowns seem to be propelled by the idea of slowing the spread of the virus to buy more time for more people to be tested and traced for isolation and or treatment, and for vaccines/medication to be developed. This makes sense, how viable it is is open to debate. In the meantime, the economic downsides are mitigated by monetary and fiscal stimulus.

In Nigeria, we have aped the same lockdowns tactic but with no programme of mass testing, it's not clear what the goal is. How long is the lockdown supposed to last for and how are people supposed to cope with the economic difficulties in the meantime? Without mass testing, we seem to be waiting for vaccines to be developed which is probably at least a year away. Is Nigeria going to lockdown for at least a year?

Given our resource constraints and demographic profile, we need to adopt a different strategy from the west. In respect of the demographics, with a disproportionately young population who are known to be largely unaffected by covid-19, the overwhelming majority of Nigerians will come out of this unscathed. We don't have a public health system or infrastructure that needs protecting from covid-19 patients as access to hospitals is limited in any case.

My proposed strategy would be largely to carry on life as normal. By all means protect the vulnerable - those with pre-existing condition, the elderly, pregnant women, etc - but we need to be mindful that lockdowns in Nigeria will be ineffectual in curtailing the virus's spread but devastating for the economy.

For once, Buhari's penchant to be inactive was probably correct (admittedly inadvertently).

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