NMA demands adequate PPE, reward for members

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  • Nigerians Medical Association (NMA), Delta State Chapter, has warned its members against attending to any coronavirus disease (COVID-19) patient without putting on Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). 

    The chairman, Dr. Ekeneam Omo, explained yesterday in Asaba that with the death of their colleagues in Lagos and Katsina, healthcare workers needed to be adequately protected to be able to save lives.

    Omo, who urged the state government to review health workers’ hazard allowance, which had been a long-standing demand even before COVID-19, insisted that doctors and other healthcare workers in the state had been mandated not to go near any COVID-19 patient without their protective kits

    He said, “Over 25 infected doctors are currently in isolation centre at University of Benin Teaching Hospital (UBTH), and the association would not close its eyes to allow its members die as a result of inadequate protection.

    “However the state government was doing a lot, but needed to do more, and keep doing more until the war against the pandemic is won.”

    In Kano, healthcare personnel rendering essential services to carriers of COVID-19 are still waiting for improved working conditions.

    Besides running the most delicate duty, the medical team are not enjoying any extraordinary benefit different from what they earn on regular clinical services.

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    In the less than seven days, Kano has recorded 21 cases of COVID-19 and one death.

    Before the announcement of the index case last Saturday, the state government had approved the use of Kwanar Dawakin Infectious Disease Centre as a dedicated isolation centre.

    Similarly, the state received two centres donated by business mogul and son of Kano, Alhaji Aliko Dangote, who dedicated 500-bed makeshift management centre for victims of COVID-19 pandemic while Alhaji Isiaka Rabiu, Chairman BUA Group, donated an equipped building as isolation centre.

    However, a medical doctor who wanted his name protected for fear of victimisation, insisted that the state was not ready to curtail the virus. He revealed that the facilities might be overstretched considering the speed of positive cases.

    Another medical consultant told The Guardian on the phone that personnel on the frontline were not provided with any special insurance worthy of the risk involved in their job.

    He said many would be surprised that doctors working at isolation centres were still receiving N5,000 monthly as hazard allowance.

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