200 Nurses in FCT contract COVID-19, says Nurses association

•Urges FG, FCT administration to insure nurses and pay hazard allowances

Over 200 nurses in the various medical facilities in the Federal Capital Territory(FCT) have contracted  COVID-19, Nigerian Association of Nurses and Midwifery has stated.

Out of the affected nurses, some 12 others have recovered and have been out of isolation, Chairperson Nigerian Association of Nurses and Midwifery, Federal Capital Territory chapter, Deborah Yusufu told the leadership of the Nigerian Union of Journalists who was at the Secretariat in Abuja to make donations of Personnel Protective Equipments (PPEs) to them.

According to Yusufu, Nigerian nurses are at the frontline of battling the COVID-19 pandemic because of their duties which make them most exposed among medical personnel in the various healthcare facility across the world and in the case Nigeria.

She explained that the curious part of the nurses exposed to COVID-19 was that it was not among the nurses in the isolation facilities but those in the normal healthcare facility treating in the Federal Capital Territory.

According to her those in the facilities where COVID-19 cases are being managed are conscious of the virulent pandemic and strictly follow the safety protocol for health workers but those in the every healthcare service facilities are the ones who became exposed due to their frequent contacts with persons who may be asymptomatic and they became infected.

She said the battle against COVID-19 is a war that all persons must take responsibility to write the pandemic out of the FCT, Nigeria Africa and the entire globe.

Yusufu who made the revelation when the leadership of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ-FCT) led by Comrade Emmanuel Ogbeche visited the FCT Nurses House to make a donation of 150 pieces of Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs) to the FCT Chapter of the Nigerian Association of Nurses and Midwifery for the use of their members while on duty, on the front lines.

Yusufu said following the reality of the pandemic’s pattern of infection, the association would distribute the PPEs to Nurses in the general facility to strengthen their compliance to safety protocol while they administer treatments and offer healthcare services to patients in the FCT hospital.

Her words: “When I received a call from one of you that you (NUJ) are bringing some items to be donated to us. I was so happy. I was gladen in my heart because saw it from this way that you have recognized, that truly, we are partners in progress in the fight against COVID-19.

“Everybody must take responsibility, it is going to be a collective responsibility on the part of all of us. Honestly, on behalf of all the nurses and midwives in the FCT, we are saying a very big thank you because of your magnanimity towards your member to prevent them from getting infected.

“As I’m standing here. We have plus 200 nurses exposed. So far about 12 have recovered and some as I am talking to you now, some are still in the isolation and fitness centre received treatment.

“Then, the most amazing thing is that those that are most affected are not those that are working in the isolation centre.

“That is why I’m so glad you brought these items because you are not taking them to isolation centres. We are taking them to the facilities, the other hospitals the other unit.

“Because number one of those that are in the solution centres have been trained already. They know the kind of enemy they are fighting with. So any time they are coming to see any patient. They are work alert. And they put on their personal protective equipment but those in the facilities are attending to people with all manner of healthcare needs,” Yusufu stated.

She said these nurses must attend to in-patient and out-patients in treatments, bed making, administering drugs etc and most people report malaria which has similar symptoms to COVID-19.

Such patients must be treated she said, where any is infected and asymptomatic, they infect those exposed to them.

She also commended the Chairman of the NUJ-FCT Council, Emmanuel Ogbeche for singling the Nurses out for this support and called on other donors to emulate same.

Chairman of the council, during the donation of the items, said the battle against COVID-19 has distorted social engagement adversely impacted on the way nurses works in the healthcare facilities.

He pointed out that the NUJ as a Union of Journalists understands the peculiarity of the tasks being undertaken by nurses and midwives across the country and the FCT to deliver on healthcare services.

Ogbeche said nurses have made tremendous sacrifices being in the frontline to keep people alive amidst the rage of the pandemic, which also poses threat to their lives, such effort, the chairman said should be commended by the society.

“In the battle against a pandemic that has ended many lives, distorted social interactions and has adversely affected the manner in which we work especially nurses and midwives, we are not unmindful of the risks that your members are exposed to.

“Our community workers as nurses and midwives in the discharge of their duties have been on the frontline on the at great risks all for the safety of humanity.

“This informed the decision of the Union to provide personal protective types of equipment to your members who keep us safe.

“We have had lamentations from various quarters of those of you in the medical and nursing profession especially on your hazard allowances and insurance. I join you in calling on the government to pay COVID allowances.

“The nurses and midwives Who dare to face the danger of coronavirus and other diseases because you want to save life because they are serving humanity should not be shortchanged in the process.

As you battle the enemy of COVID-19 for the common struggle, for the good of all and not just of nurses and midwives but that of the Nigerian worker in general.

We want to encourage you not to be dissuaded by whatever is happening, we encourage you and your members to stay steadfast and to continue with your jobs diligently, professionally and with commitments to your oath and value for lives.

“We in the NUJ like many other Nigerians believe that your reward is not only in heaven, but nurses would surely find your reward here on earth.

“It is in this belief that we formally present these items (PPEs) to you to share among your personal and members of the Association of Nigeria Nurses and midwives for their safety while they secure us,” Ogbeche said.



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