Striking doctors in Lagos State have volunteered to join the team of experts managing patients at the Infectious Diseases Hospital, Yaba, Lagos.
The chairman, Lagos State chapter of the Nigerian Medical Association, Dr. Tope Ojo, who said this at a press briefing in Lagos on Tuesday, added that strike would not stop doctors in the state from attending to persons suspected to have contracted the Ebola virus. Ojo said about 30 of its members had volunteered to join seven of the Ebola Emergency Response and Management Committee working on the prevention and control of the disease at the IDH centre in Yaba.
He said, “Strike or no strike, we must respond to emergencies. Our doctors are at Mainland Hospital, Yaba, were isolated contacts are being monitored. There are seven committees working on the management of the disease at the centre in Lagos, which our members are part of.
But the committee, where we are having challenges getting volunteers, is case management. This are the people that work directly with confirmed cases. “Look at the protective measures that doctors in Liberia and
Guinea wear. They are well protected, yet some of them still caught it. Our doctors are worried about the danger it poses to their lives and they need to be reassured. “We understand their fears and we are making moves to confirm the level of preparedness of the government for doctors.”
He informed that the infected doctor, who is presently on admission at the Mainland Hospital, Yaba, was responding to treatment.
“We know that the infected doctor is stable, however, the matron is in a critical condition. But everybody, including the experts from the World Health Organisation, is doing all they can,” he said. A member of one of the of the committees, Dr. Babajide Saheed, said the doctors were working closely with the WHO and other stakeholders to contain the risk of the spreading the infection.
Saheed said, “Not all doctors can attend to an Ebola patient. In fact you must limit the number of health workers treating affected persons just to contain the risk. “We will be escalating the situation if doctors rush to Mainland Hospital just to attend to patients.”