More measures underway to check COVID-19 in kwara- AbdulRazaq

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Kwara State Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq has hinted that at more “sweeping measures” were on the way to check the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) in the state.

Duaglobalnews reports that though Kwara currently has no confirmed case
of Coronavirus, the state government has set up various preventive and safety mechanisms against its spread.

These include: establishing and equipping an isolation centre to tackle the virus as Nigeria records 36 cases of the disease in at least four states and Abuja, nation’s capital.

Abdulrazaq told reporters, shortly after inspecting the State Infectious Disease Centre at Sobi Specialist Hospital, Alagbado, Ilorin that COVID-19 might be treated as a national security issue requiring support and understanding of every citizen to stamp out.

He said:”We will be announcing further measures this week in containing the spread of the virus. We also expect the Federal government to come up with further measures.

“Work is going on to extend this (isolation) centre. We are looking at extending it to accommodate about 100 patients and that should be ready in the next couple of weeks.”

“At the last National Economic Council meeting in Abuja, state governors proposed that each state should have one laboratory to test samples of patients for any outbreak of diseases.

” But there are challenges with the resources. So first of all, let’s look at having zonal centres before state centres.

“This may entail further restrictions on the movement of people in the interest of public health and security. It is a national security situation which everybody should understand.”

“We will take more measures this week to make sure our people sit at home.

“The civil servants will sit at home, their children will be at home.
“Please take care of your kids; don’t roam about. It is also the time to clean your environment and ensure that your community is clean.”

The governor said the new isolation centre would be extended in the coming weeks to accommodate around 100 patients, if the disease breaks in the state.

He added the state government had been working with Abuja on the ongoing efforts to establish zonal test centres with the capacity to screen blood samples for COVID-19.

He commended the state Ministry of Health for the efforts to prepare Kwara for any outbreak, saying the state was also strengthening the capacity of its health personnel to deal with any emergency that might arise.

“It is not just (about) doing an ordinary blood test. Yes you can have the equipment but the reagents are not easy to come by. They are very expensive. So, we are waiting for the Federal Ministry of Health to see what they can accommodate.

” Right now, we send blood samples to Lagos. We are hoping that capacity will be built by the Federal government so that we can first have zonal centres before we have state centres, which will surely come.”

The Governor assured the civil servants of prompt payment of salaries despite the work-from-home directive.

He thanked the traditional and religious leaders for their cooperation so far in the campaign against the virus.

“At present, we have no case in Kwara. So far so good, let us keep on praying and acting right.”

He specially thanked the Emir of Ilorin, Alhaji Ibrahim Sulu-Gambari, for calling on the Muslim community together and suspendJum’ah prayers in the state and the royal father’s decision as proactive.

The governor also commended the Christian Association of Nigeria CAN for taking similar measures.

The Health Commissioner Dr Raji Razaq and the state’s Director of Public Health, Dr Oluwatosin Fakayode, had earlier taken the Governor round the newly equipped facility, designated to handle infectious diseases in the state.

Fakayode said Ministry of Health had built the capacity of some of its officials to handle any case of coronavirus.

According to him, simulation/drilling exercise will begin immediately for the health officials to enable them be on high alert.

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