The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) reported 94 new cases of COVID-19 Monday.
In a Twitter update via its verified handle, the government agency said there are now 64,184 confirmed cases of the disease caused by the novel coronavirus in Nigeria.
A total number of 60,069 people it said, have so far been discharged from hospital, while the deaths now stand at 1,158 with an additional four.
Coronavirus cases have risen over the last few months in several regions of the world and infections worldwide have since exceeded 50 million.
As of Monday, more than 50 million of COVID-19 cases have been reported worldwide, with more than 32.8 million of those listed as recovered, according to a coronavirus tracking tool maintained by Johns Hopkins University. The global death toll now sands at more than 1.2 million, the U.S.-based university has said.
Africa has reportedly seen more than 1.8 million confirmed infections and more than 44,000 deaths.
But there is a ray of hope. Pfizer has reportedly made a breakthrough the COVID-19 vaccine research which has been welcomed by scientists and leaders. The World Health Organization (WHO) said the results were very positive, but warned there was a funding gap of $4.5bn that could slow access to tests, medicines and vaccines in low- and middle-income countries.
Drugmakers Pfizer and BioNTech have said their experimental vaccine may be 90 per cent effective at preventing COVID-19.
The drugmakers’ trial involves some 44,000 people in six countries, half of whom have been administered with the vaccine, while the other half were given a placebo – a treatment designed to have no effect.
Monday’s data is from an interim analysis that was conducted after 94 participants in the continuing trial developed COVID-19. Fewer than nine of them who caught the disease had been given the vaccine.
To confirm the efficacy rate, Pfizer reportedly said it would continue its trial until there were 164 COVID-19 cases among volunteers, a number that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has agreed is enough to tell how well the vaccine is working.
The data, however, have yet to be peer-reviewed or published in a medical journal. Pfizer said it would do so once it has the results from the entire trial.
The way this new vaccine works is called mRNA, meaning that you are not actually being injected with parts of the virus or a weakened form of it, but you are actually being administered with a part of the genetic code of the coronavirus. This tricks the body into producing some of the viral proteins itself so that the immune system then detects these proteins and starts to produce a defensive response to them.
Pfizer and BioNTech said they plan to apply to the FDA for emergency approval to use the vaccine by the end of the month, when they will have two months of safety data on about half of trial participants. This has raised the possibility of a regulatory decision as soon as December.
Pfizer and BioNTech have a $1.95bn contract with the US government to deliver 100 million vaccine doses beginning this year. They have also reached supply agreements with the European Union, the United Kingdom, Canada and Japan.