Minister of health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, said 40 health workers had tested positive for COVID-19.
Ehanire disclosed this on Thursday during the daily briefing by the presidential task force on COVID-19.
He therefore urged frontline workers to always protect themselves when treating COVID-19 patients.
According to him, “I urge you all to take the necessary precautions. Please do not try to treat patients without adequate PPE.
“This advice is necessary due to the number of health workers who have tested positive. They are over 40 now and some others have had to be quarantined in the last two weeks due to exposure and are, therefore, not able to contribute to the health sector efforts.
“I urge you all to remain vigilant in the line of duty.”
Responding to a question on the country’s testing capacity, the minister said the high number of new cases could be attributed to improved testing.
He said, “The high number of new cases is a manifestation of improved testing but also of ongoing community transmission.
“The NCDC laboratories have the capacity to test 1,500 samples per day in 13 laboratories per day.
“We are testing an average of 600 samples per day because that is all the samples collected and sent for testing.”
He said the under-utilisation could be due to surveillance, sample collection and mode of transportation which could be improved through investments in logistics.