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What you need to Know

1. The Standard Minimum Guidelines for Human Rights of COVID-19 Patients in Treatment Centres in Nigeria (the Guidelines) is a policy instrument and recommendation made by the National Human Rights Commission (the Commission) to the government and health authorities for the mainstreaming of human rights guarantees into the treatment processes of COVID-19 patients in Nigeria.

2. Issuing these Guidelines is a part of the mandate of the Commission to promote and protect human rights as enshrined in the Constitution of Nigeria, other legislations in force in Nigeria and regional and global human rights instruments to which Nigeria is a party.

3. The present Guidelines were made pursuant to the powers and functions of the Commission in section 5(a)(d)(l) and section 6(g) of the National Human Rights Commission (Amendment) Act, 2010.

4. The Guidelines contain human rights guarantees such as the rights to life, health, dignity, privacy, religion and protection against discrimination. It also contains provisions aimed at ensuring access to adequate accommodation, food, water and sanitation by patients at treatment centres and facilities (hereinafter referred to as the Centres) in Nigeria.


1. The COVID-19 pandemic has taken its toll on the enjoyment of human rights. There have been restrictions put in place by governments at national and state levels, with huge impacts on socio-economic wellbeing of Nigerians.

2. Governments have set up Centres across Nigeria where COVID-19 patients are treated by medical personnel and other staff. As a result of the contagious nature of the virus, extreme care must be taken to secure the human rights of the patients in the Centres.

3. The Guidelines are aimed at ensuring that the Centres operate in line with international human rights norms and to secure the rights of the patients, medical personnel and support staff.

4. It is also important that vulnerable groups such as children, persons with disabilities, older persons and women are treated with the dignity and protection accorded their status.


1. The Guidelines are applicable to federal and state governments, all public and private Centres and other facilities in Nigeria where COVID-19 patients are treated.

2. It shall be the duty of governments and the Centres to implement the Guidelines.

3. The rights and guarantees enunciated in the Guidelines shall be enforceable by any patient or persons who have suffered violations in accordance with the Constitution.

4. The Commission when requested, shall provide technical support in designing systems and frameworks for implementation of the Guidelines.

5. The Commission shall monitor, investigate, enforce and issue periodic reports on the implementation of the Guidelines.