COVID-19: Reopen All Labs And Keep Isolation Centres Open, PTF Tells States

PTF Chairman, Mr Boss Mustapha, briefing reporters in Abuja on December 29, 2020.

 

Authorities in all 36 states of the Federation and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) have been asked to reopen all laboratories and scale up the testing for COVID-19.

The Chairman of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19, Mr Boss Mustapha, made the appeal on Tuesday at a briefing in Abuja.

“We wish to urge all states to reopen all laboratories and ensure that testing is expanded and turnaround time for results is substantially reduced.

“In the same vein, states should please keep their Isolation and Treatment Centres open because of the rising cases of infection nationwide,” he told reporters at the briefing.

Nigeria has tested 937,712 samples, out of which 84,811 infections have been confirmed, 12,190 cases are active, 71,357 people have been discharged, and 1,264 fatalities recorded – as of 7pm on December 29, 2020.

This data is according to the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC)’s micro-website dedicated to monitoring the outbreak in the country.

Mustapha, who is also the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), added, “Reports received also point to the fact that laboratories recently established in the states are not working optimally.

“You will recall that we moved from two laboratories to about ninety (public and private) located in all states of the Federation. Their inability to function optimally has resulted in unacceptable levels of delay in receiving results and pressure on the national reference labs.”

A screenshot taken on December 29, 2020, shows Nigeria’s COVID-19 data.

 

He announced that effective from January 1, 2021, the passports of the first 100 passengers that have failed to take their post-arrival PCR test would be published in the national dailies.

According to the PTF chairman, the passports of the erring returning travellers will be suspended until June 2021, to serve as a deterrent.

On the issue of oxygen availability as critical to the success of managing the outbreak, he noted that a review of the chain for the supply of medical oxygen for facilities across the country was ongoing.

Ondo ‎Governor Commissions Mega Primary School

OndoThe Ondo State ‎Governor says the goal of his administration’s investment in education is to produce qualitative human resources.

Dr. Olusegun Mimiko said this on Tuesday while addressing a gathering at the commissioning of a newly built Mega Primary School, Fagbo in Ondo East Local Government Area of the state in southwest Nigeria.

He said that education should be geared towards preparing the pupils for a highly productive future, adding that the Mega school concept was to create equity and all inclusive growth.

He also expressed hope that it would enhance socioeconomic development as well as peace in the society.

In his welcome address, Ondo State Commissioner for Education, Jide Adejuyigbe, said that the ultramodern schools were designed to meet the standards of modern infrastructure expected in the state.

He added that it would equally provide a conducive environment to facilitate effective teaching and learning.

The Commissioner also listed the various features in the school that made it unique. They include the laboratories, multipurpose hall and ICT centre.

The event was part of the activities lined up to mark the 40th anniversary of Ondo State and the seventh year anniversary of Governor Mimiko’s administration.

Ebola: Health Workers Seek Better Welfare

Ebola
ebola-health-workers

Health workers in Nigeria are seeking protection and better incentives for their colleagues giving treatment for patients with Ebola Virus Disease.

According to the President of the Health Workers Union, Mr Ayuba Wabba, healthcare providers have been worse affected by the outbreak of the disease in West Africa.

The union called for the recruitment of more health workers and better legislature that would guarantee the welfare of the care givers in the front-line of fighting the Ebola scourge.

Mr Wabba was speaking at a forum organised by the National Union of Medical and Health Worker in Nigeria to provide training on how to manage Ebola cases without being infected with the virus.

Apart from the workshop, health workers also believe there is a need for insurance and better legislature.

The National Council on Health had, on Monday, passed a resolution to press for life insurance coverage for health workers handling Ebola cases across the country.

While all health workers are at the risk of contracting the virus, experts believe that those working in laboratories, nurses, laundry and clinical services are at greater risk.

The National Association of Nigerian Nurses and Midwives have also threatened industrial action because of discrimination and poor welfare.

Statistics reveals that since the recent outbreak, over 240 health workers have contracted the virus in West Africa. In Nigeria, out of the six deaths recorded, three were health care workers.