COVID-19: Health Worker Reportedly Dies In Cross River State

The Nigeria Medical Association (NMA), Cross River State chapter, has confirmed the death of a health worker suspected to be COVID-19 related.

The body of doctors confirmed this in a statement with reference no NMACRS/SG/2020/05/214 dated May 22, 2020 and signed by the Chairman, Dr. Agam E. Ayuk and Secretary, Dr. Ezoke Epoke.
The NMA decried the death of the health worker, saying that it has become imperative to quicken the response time due to the rising number of deaths from suspected cases.

The body noted that as, at May 18, 2020, only seven samples were tested.

According to NMA, the unacceptable low number of persons tested in the state suggested a lack of diligent, expansive and coordinated surveillance response which is the hallmark for effective prevention and containment of COVID-19.

The group therefore, appealed for an expansion of the surveillance unit with the provision of more field staff, utility vehicles, ICT/technical support to enable unit carry out its role of early case finding for testing and isolation of confirmed cases to limit community transmission.

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“As of May 21, 2020, information available to us has it that seven out of the eight samples collected so far are from the University of Calabar Teaching Hospital, Calabar (UCTH).

“Many questions are begging for answers; Is it only UCTH that has patients that meet the criteria for sample collection?

“Very worrisome is the fact that most members of the medical community are currently expressing concerns if the samples collected are the samples sent to NCDC.

“We call on the State COVID-19 task force to create a transparent system for tracking of samples from the point of collection to Testing Centre to restore confidence on the eventual results reported,” the statement stated.

NMA said that the present restrictions in interstate movement makes sample transportation very expensive and cumbersome.

“We use this medium to call on NCDC to change the testing centre of Cross River State from Irrua to Abakaliki,” the doctors said.


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