Medical doctors under the employ of Lagos State Government, yesterday expressed, worry over-relaxation of the lockdown in the state, disclosing that 16 members of the Medical Guild in the state have been infected with COVID-19.
Addressing journalists on Covid-19 issues, response and challenges the Guild identified in Lagos, Chairman of the body, Dr Sodipo Oluwajimi, who explained that the doctors were in stable condition, said to prevent more doctors from being infected they have adopted the slogan of ‘No Personal Protective Equipment, No work.”
Oluwajimi asked the State Government to prioritise provision of PPE in hospitals at all levels to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.
Stressing that it was premature to ease the lockdown, he said: “Issues around the use of social distancing, use of face masks, having adequate hand washing and hand sanitizers in place with appropriate measures to checkmate defaulters are yet to be resolved.
“We do not support the use of gloves, if they are not changed regularly and hand hygiene practised, it could lead to increased spread. “
Other issues he listed that are yet to be resolved include; “The provision of a post lockdown surge in need for consumables especially Personal Protective Equipment in the hospitals with the attendant risk of increased infections and the need for bed space. This will be worsened if testing and contact tracing are not at maximum capacity to allow for early identification of cases, proper quarantine and isolation as appropriate among others.
The Medical Guild Chair recommended the setting up of a multi-stakeholder Committee that would incorporate health workers groups such as the Medical Guild which would regularly discuss and update clinical guidelines as regards COVID-19.
“The Lagos State Government should start the process of dialogue and negotiation between the health workers and government with a mandate for implementation of the health workers agreement with special emphasis on health insurance, hazard allowance, Covid-19 allowance and other benefits.”
3 health workers among 4 new cases in Ondo
Meanwhile, three health workers are among the four new cases of COVID-19 pandemic in Ondo State.
They include a driver who carries samples to Test Centres outside the state and the two casual workers. With the four new cases, the number of COVID-19 patients has jumped to 13. The Health Commissioner, Dr Wahab Adegbenro said that “so far 276 people have been tested, 244 results received, 13 tested positive, three already discharged, 10 persons on admission and that 148 contacts are being followed.
Governor Rotimi Akeredolu, who disclosed the infection of the three health workers at a media briefing in Akure said they work at the lnfectious Disease Hospital, IDH.
Describing them as heroes, the governor said: “These three individuals are junior workers in that establishment, yet their contributions are critical and very essential to all our operations to fight COVID-19. Ondo state government stands firmly with them and will walk with them through these difficult times until they recover and fully get back their daily lives. Their tribulation is our burden and their total recovery will be our joy.”
Consequently, the governor directed “the immediate absorption into the public service of the infected casual workers at the IDH.”
Akeredolu, in a bid to support frontline risk bearers, has approved that “all Health workers in the state be paid 50% of their consolidated basic salary as hazard allowance.
“Furthermore, all healthcare workers working directly in the Isolation Centre/Treatment Centre are to get additional 20% of their 50% as special risk allowance, they will also get a top-up lump sum from the funds of the PTF.
“There is also a ban on non-food items. Such non food items include but are not limited to fabrics, jewelleries, cosmetics, shoes, furniture, decorations, books and stationery, phone and electronics, beer parlours and pleasure centres and others in such category.
“For avoidance of doubt, the Oja Oba, Isinkan, Iloro, Isolo, in Akure and their equivalents across the state will remain shut in accordance with the approved schedules earlier stated.
“The main perishable food supply depot in each of the city centres in the state will only open for business on Monday, Wednesday and Friday every week.”
Suspect’s preference for herbs cause anxiety in Ondo police division
Meantime, fear has gripped policemen attached to Yaba police division in Ondo town, over reports that a female senior officer who showed symptoms of COVID-19 has refused to subject herself to test and treatment.
Instead, sources told newsmen that she had been taking herbs rather than go for a test to know her status.
Her alleged refusal to go for COVID 19 test had equally raised panic among her family members.
A relation of the policewoman said she had been taking herbs at home to treat herself.
He said he had to raise the alarm so that she would not infect other innocent people around her both at home and work place.
“I am ready to give all information needed, she is my blood sister. The family members did not know. Neighbourhood people don’t know (about her health condition) and she is drinking herbs.”