The Rivers State Government has said that 22 doctors and 60 other health workers have tested positive for the deadly coronavirus disease in the state.
The state’s chapter of the Nigerian Medical Association, NMA, chairperson, Dr. Obelebra Adebiyi, made this known to newsmen in Port Harcourt on Friday.
Adebiyi also appealed to the government to have a review of the hazard allowances paid to doctors employed by the state government, due to the challenges faced by the health workers in the state.
According to her, the health workers fighting the virus lacked adequate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).
“The number of COVID-19 cases in the state increased from 0, in less than 8 weeks, to about 450 confirmed cases with 21 deaths.
“This is really a worrisome situation, and we are more worried because of the rise in cases of infection among health workers.
“22 doctors and over 60 health workers are currently been confirmed positive and are receiving treatment across different isolation centers in the state.
“Also, the state has also recorded the death of a health worker who died after contracting the virus.
“This clearly calls for more action from the government, the heads of government and private health facilities in the state, and indeed the general public.”
She also stated that it is the responsibility of the government to provide adequate PPEs for the health workers who are risking their lives to fight the disease.
”Health workers in public hospitals are left to provide personal protective equipment for themselves.
“It is the responsibility of the Government to ensure that they make provisions for PPEs for all health workers in public and private hospitals.
“When health workers are unprotected, there is a high risk for infection and our collective effort to fight the pandemic will be fruitless.
“However, this is an issue that must be urgently addressed if we will make progress in our fight against COVID-19,” she added.