Chief medical director, UBTH, Prof. Darlington Obaseki, in a statement, yesterday in Benin, said: “The two surviving patients are currently being cared for by our dedicated staff in an isolation ward, with restricted access.
“Prior to the confirmation of their COVID-19 status, some of our healthcare staffers were exposed to these patients while using only personal protection equipment, such as surgical face-masks and gloves. Currently all the members of staff who were exposed to these patients are asymptomatic and they are being monitored closely, according to the current guidelines.
“Further measures have been put in place to ensure that our staffers are not unduly exposed to risks of infection with COVID-19 in the course of providing care for patients who come to the hospital for various reasons. Healthcare workers are on the frontline during this pandemic and are, therefore, at higher risk of being exposed than the general public.”
He said the management and staff of UBTH had been observing standard precautions at all times to prevent the spread of the disease.
“I crave the support and understanding of the general public as we fight this raging battle to contain and curb COVID-19,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Association of Residents Doctor (ARD), UBTH chapter, in a statement, said that 25 medical doctors who had contact with the patients had gone into mandatory self-isolation. The association said that 13 of the 25 doctors were house officers, while 12 were resident doctors.
ARD, however, expressed displeasure with the hospital’s management over what it described as poor handling of coronavirus in the hospital.
According to the association, many of the health workers have complained of lack of personal protective equipment like masks and hand sanitisers.
A source who pleaded anonymity said the coronavirus crisis in the hospital started when three patients, who had earlier tested negative for the virus, were declared positive after further tests.
Meanwhile, the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital (LASUTH), Ikeja, said three of its health workers have been placed in isolation after contact with a patient who died of COVID-19.
Chairman of the medical advisory committee of the hospital, Ibrahim Mustafa, said that two doctors and a nurse had contact with the patient that died on April 3 at the Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH), Idi-Araba, Lagos.
He said the patient was attended to in the vehicle that conveyed him to LASUTH and his exposure to health workers and other patients was minimal.
“The patient did not divulge his travel history and underlying medical conditions to health workers, but the health workers were suspicious based on his symptoms and warning to exercise caution while attending to patients. The health workers that attended to the patient took necessary precautions, but, based on the advice of LASUTH Infectious Diseases Consultant, the doctor and nurses that had contact with the patient had been placed on isolation,” he said.
He urged the public to always volunteer accurate information about their travel history and medical conditions to health workers, in order to assist in providing the right diagnosis and treatment.
He said there was the need to increase sensitisation among the public that COVID-19 infection was not a death sentence, adding that volunteering information and early treatment would increase the chances of recovery. Mustafa advised health workers to continue to be vigilant and ensure precaution while attending to patients.
Lagos State Commissioner for Health, Prof. Akin Abayomi, disclosed that the deceased was 55-year-old Nigerian male who lived in Holland but returned to Lagos two weeks ago. The patient had a kidney transplant seven years ago, and was also diabetic.