The Nigeria Medical Association (NMA) has confirmed the death of a health worker suspected to be COVID-19 patient.

In a statement with a 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, which was made available to DAILY POST, the association confirmed the death of the health worker suspected to be COVID-19 victim.

The NMA lamented the death of the health worker, saying that the quick response time has become more imperative due to the rising number of deaths from suspected cases.

The NMA said as, at May 18th 2020, only seven samples were tested with Kogi State carrying out less testing across the country.

The group further said that the figure was very worrisome leading to the affirmation by the Director-General NCDC.

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

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

“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 situation makes sample transportation very expensive and cumbersome occasioned by restrictions in interstate movement. We use this medium to call on NCDC to change the testing centre of Cross River State from Irrua to Abakaliki.


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