COVID-19: Imo Begins Free Community Mass Testing Sept. 1

Imo State Government has said it will begin community mass testing for COVID-19 on Sept. 1.

The state’s Commissioner for Health, Dr. Damaris Osunkwo, who made this known while addressing newsmen in Owerri on Thursday, expressed optimism that the planned mass testing will enable the state achieve it’s aim of testing at least one per cent of its residents.

She noted that the action was in line with directives from Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC).

According to the Commissioner, arrangements have been concluded for mobile laboratories to alternate from one Local Government headquarters to another with the aim of testing 500 persons in each LGA.

“We are on top of this matter and we will continue to do our best to look after Imo residents. COVID-19 is not a death sentence.

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“We call on our people to come out and be tested for free, starting Sept. 1.

“The test is voluntary. Gov. Hope Uzodinma has assured that those who test positive will get free treatment and feeding.

“We are in this together for a COVID-19 free Imo and our aim is to test, treat, trace and stay safe”, Osunkwo said.

The commissioner, while thanking the state Governor, Sen. Hope Uzodinma for his administration’s commitment to the fight against Coronavirus, urged health workers in the state not to relent in their efforts.

She also called on the media as well as traditional rulers to partner with the state for effective information dissemination.

Also speaking, the Director Public Health, Dr. Austin Okeji said that the tests will be on schedule from one LGA to another with a duration of two days for each LGA.

“We have activated our social mobilisation officers who are collaborating with traditional rulers for aggressive sensitisation of our people. Hopefully, the results will be worth the effort,” Okeji said.