The Lagos State Commissioner for Health, Akin Abayomi, said on Thursday that the state may experience the peak of coronavirus by August.
Speaking at a press briefing on Thursday, Abayomi said that the COVID-19 prediction model of the state holds that the pandemic will soon reach its peak, followed by the flattening of the curve and a gradual decline in the number of cases.
“We believe that in the next week or two, we are going to see an increase in both the private sector testing and public laboratory testing.
“We are still seeing a gentle increase in the number of cases overtime cumulatively. Lagos will theoretically peak in the month of August, it will flatten out and over some time, we will see a decline,” Abayomi said.
The commissioner earlier said the state will record between 90,000 to 120,000 positive cases by July or August.
When asked whether the state is still going by the model, the commissioner said the model is already playing out.
“For every one person that tested positive, there are probably 10 people that are positive and have not been tested.”
The commissioner said Lagos having about 13,000 confirmed cases as of July shows that there are 130,000 overall going by the calculation.
As of Thursday, Lagos has conducted over 56, 276 COVID-19 tests, out of which 13,543 came back positive.
The commissioner said the state currently has 2,476 active cases of coronavirus, 9,066 cases recovered in communities, 2079 discharged cases and 192 deaths within the isolation facilities and communities.
The commissioner disclosed that the state is currently conducting 1,000 tests per day but is planning to increase testing to between 2500 and 4000 per day.
Abayomi said the public sector will conduct tests for those that need to be tested while the private sector will focus on “those that want to be tested”.
The commissioner said the state has not approved rapid testing due to its inaccuracy.
“Rapid testing is not reliable, it shows patients to be negative when they are positive and positive when they are negative.
“The government has not been able to pass or accredit any of these rapid diagnostic tests because they do not have accuracy,” he said.
Abayomi said it is illegal of private facilities to conduct COVID-19 testing without government approval, adding that two facilities have been shut down during COVID.
He advised private practitioners not to perform COVID-19 tests “because they risk their facilities being shut down by the government”.
The commissioner said the state will increase sampling in local governments by increasing sample collection centres from 20 to 57, one per local government development area.
The state will also set up oxygen kiosks in the decentralised sample collection centres, he added.
Meanwhile, to increase its capacity in COVID-19 management, the Lagos State Ministry of Health has commenced management of COVID-19 cases electronically.
“We manage asymptomatic or mild cases of coronavirus electronically. We keep in touch through telephone, telemedicine, phone calls, zoom calls, and other ways of monitoring people who are self-isolating at home, including home visits if possible,” he said.
Abayomi said the state will formally activate the home-care management in the coming weeks.
He added that two new isolation centres will go active in the coming weeks: a 70-bed capacity isolation centre and a 150-bed centre at Yaba.