Extended lockdown: Lagos doctors urge provision of adequate protective wears

COVI9-19 Balancing Act Health Economy

The Nigeria Medical Association (NMA) has appealed to the Lagos State Government to provide adequate personal protective equipment (PPE) for its health personnel fighting to stem the spread of the coronavirus.

The State Chairman of the association, Dr. Saliu Oseni, made the appeal in an interview with our correspondent on Wednesday in Lagos.

Oseni also urged patients to always be truthful about their medical history and follow protocols to prevent the wrong diagnosis.

According to him, falsified medical history is capable of putting others at risk of the virus.

“Some patients may not want to say the truth about their conditions, thereby, putting everybody they come in contact with, at risk.

“So, it is important patients tell the truth to avoid chaos in the system and community at large,’’ he said.

Meanwhile, the NMA boss said that clinical and other medical services were going unhindered at major health facilities in the state, despite the additional two-week extended lockdown order by President Muhammadu Buhari.

He, however, said that only skeletal services were being rendered while emergencies are promptly attended to.

“We want to make sure we keep to the social distancing and attend to only a few patients.

“We run emergencies as well,’’ Oseni told said our correspondent, who also visited a private hospital, Vedic Lifecare Hospital, Lekki, ports that precautionary measures were put in place to safeguard patients and staff of the hospital facilities.

Soap and water, hand sanitizers and tissues were stationed at the entrance of the facility while healthcare workers were seen taking temperatures of patients, who visited.

A nurse, who pleaded anonymity, said that patients with signs of fever were not allowed into the hospital.

“Instead, a doctor comes out to attend to the patient, asking questions and if there is a need for further investigation, the patient would be referred appropriately,’’ the nurse said.

At the Federal Neuro-psychiatric hospital, Yaba, the Head, Clinical Services, Dr. Olugbenga Owoeye, said that the hospital was functioning fully.

Owoeye, however, told us that clinics were run in the open, under canopies and patients were made to sit with feet away from one another as part of the protocols to stay safe.

“The hospital is running and we are seeing patients.

“We also run emergencies and we make sure all protocols are followed,’’ he said.

At the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital (LASUTH), Ikeja, the management of the facility says it has put in place a Crisis Management Committee and a ‘Triage Protocol’ in screening, isolation, and notification of highly infectious diseases.

Prof. Adetokunbo Fabamwo, Chief Medical Director of the hospital told NAN that every patient is screened at the gate before been allowed into the facility.

‘Triage Protocol’ is the process of sorting people based on their need for immediate medical treatment as compared to their chance of benefiting from such care.

Triage is done in emergency rooms, disasters, and wars when limited medical resources must be allocated to maximize the number of survivors.

“We check their body temperature and the instruction is that any temperature above 37.5’C, a medical professional should be alerted,’’ Fabamwo told the correspondent.

He said that the facility has enough Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for its health workers to assist them to discharge their duties accordingly.

“Our medical personnel have already been trained to take all precautionary measures to prevent, protect against, respond to, and mitigate the effect of an emergency incident.’’

He explained that the PPE was used only based on risk assessment and when seeing patients, after which they are appropriately disposed of into color-coded bins.

The CMD added that the PPE is not to be worn as part of dressing when not attending to patients. (NAN)

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