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Nigeria loses five pilgrims in Saudi Arabia

Nigeria has lost five pilgrims, including three females and two males, in Saudi Arabia, Dr Ibrahim Kana, the Chairman, Medical Committee, National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) has said.
In a statement on Tuesday, Dr Kana said one died in Madina while the remaining four died in the city of Makkah.
He added that they all died of various illnesses, including heart and lung diseases.
The head of national medical team noted that all the families had been informed accordingly by the various state pilgrims’ welfare agencie. He said that the Chairman/CEO of NAHCON had also informed the presidency as well as extended letters of condolences to the governors of states affected. He said records from the National Medical Team Electronic Health Medical Records showed that so far in both Makkah and Madina, 10,485 diagnosis had been made with Makkah accounting for over 60%.
He added that 108 referrals were made to various Saudi Arabian hospitals after keeping 45 on observation for a variety of illnesses in the four facilities in Madina and five in Makkah.
Dr Kana, who said all the clinics were located within a stone throw to pilgrims’ accommodation in both Makkah and Madina in order to ameliorate suffering of pilgrims, added that over 15 million drugs had been consumed by Nigerian pilgrims at  no cost to them.
He said NAHCON prepared a drug forecast for the entire operation, including drugs for HIV/AIDS and Tuberculosis which were donated by the Federal Ministry of Health while the remaining were procured by the Commission, both onshore and offshore following government’s due process.
Dr Kana said the medical team had not yet encountered any serious situation or potential outbreak of any disease, except for the extreme temperatures on which pilgrims had been admonished to stay indoors as much as possible, saying if they must go out, they should cultivate the use of umbrellas and consume plenty of cold water.
Regarding concerns of the deadly Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Corona Virus (MERS-CoV), he said pilgrims had been ‘strongly’ advised to stay away from camels which are the reservoir and vector for the transmission of the disease.
Dr Kana, who appealed to pilgrims again to eat healthy and not patronised illegal food vendors in order to prevent cases of gastroenteritis as a result of food poisoning, also advised them not to consume stale foods which get easily contaminated as a result of the high temperatures.
He reminded the pilgrims that the medical personnel were in the Saudi Kingdom as a result of them and therefore free to indulge the free services while encouraging the personnel to be cautious and humane to the guests of Allah.
Dr Kana warned those patronising the clinics just to receive drugs that the act would be prevented as all the NAHCON clinics were fully computerised.(Daily Trust)

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