From David Onwuchekwa, Nnewi
The second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic should not be a source of worry to the Nnamdi Azikiwe University Teaching Hospital (NAUTH) and its host communities since measures are already put in place to contain it while members of the public are expected to play their own part.
This was the submission of the Chairman, Medical Advisory Committee (CMAC) of the health institution, Dr Joseph Ugboaja, yesterday, who insisted that there was nothing to worry about as there was high level of preparedness on ground.
Dr Ugboaja said in an interview that all the things activated to fight the pandemic in the first wave were already in place, assuring that more measures would be added as an outcome of research findings based on the experience of the first wave of the pandemic.
He noted that at the outbreak of the first wave of the Covid-19, the hospital combated the scourge from various dimensions including sensitization of the host communities on the Nigeria Center for Disease Control (NCDC) and World Health Organization’s protocols which he said yielded positive results.
He assured that the NAUTH was battle ready to contain the second wave by every possible means. He advised the general public not to joke with the already established Covid-19 protocols to make sure that regular wash of hands, use of nose masks and social distancing were strictly adhered to.
“We’ve gone through the first round of Covid-19 and I think the government responded very well towards fighting the pandemic in the first phase. The central government constituted central committees, strengthened the NCDC, the Federal Ministry of Health and collaborating agencies with tremendous support to teaching hospitals.
“Government has gone ahead to establish and strengthen virology labouratories in almost all the tertiary health institutions in the country. Government backed it up with the supply of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), establishment of vaccination centres and training of labouratory health care workers. And that, in my mind, accounted for the good outcome we had in the first wave of Covid-19 in the country. Though we had cases, the mortality rate was low comparatively. Indeed it was among the lowest across the globe.
” Now that we are about experiencing the second wave already occurring in other climes, the good thing is that the system is already strengthened, prepared and I would expect a better measure in terms of containing it and all of that. So, I think the hospitals are well prepared now.
“Most of the virology labouratory have now come up in the process of procurement and all of that. Government has even given the approval for establishing and equipping the Intensive Care Units (ICUs) across the tertiary hospitals in the country, ” CMAC said.
Dr Ugboaja who many stakeholders of the NAUTH are said to have tipped for the plume job of the Chief Medical Director of the health institution soon to be vacant also noted that curving and containing the spread of the pandemic had a lot to do with attitudinal behavior of the general public in terms of adhering to the Covid-19 protocols.