Health professionals in Cross River have advised the state government to convert the Tinapa Resort emporiums into isolation centre in case of any recorded positive case of Covid-19 in the state.
Chairman of the group, Agam Ayuk, made this known on Thursday in Calabar while submitting the groups report and recommendations on how to improve on fight against the pandemic in the state.
Ayuk, also the Chairman of Nigerian Medical Association in the state, submitted the report to the state Commissioner for Health, Dr Betta Edu, who also doubles as the Chairman of the Cross River Covid-19 task force team.
Ayuk said that the recommendations became necessary to fully equip the state with necessary facilities to contain the virus in case of any outbreak.
He explained that the patient capacity of the University of Calabar Teaching Hospital (UCTH) isolation centre was grossly inadequate.
The NMA chairman said that the Tinapa Resort emporiums would, therefore, complement the efforts of the UCTH in case of emergency.
“As a body of Health Professionals, we suggest that the Tinapa Resort emporiums be converted into an isolation centre because the patient capacity of UCTH isolation centre is grossly inadequate.
“The state government should liaise with the National Centre for Disease Control to scale up the bio-safety level “3” laboratory at Dr Lawrence Henshaw Memorial Hospital in Calabar for testing of Covid-19 infections.
“We recommend to the state government to train and re-train all health professionals on prevention and control of Covid-19 infection and distribution of essential equipment for all health professionals at the frontline of the pandemic.
“All required facilities, equipment and accessories should be provided at the Covid-19 isolation centre in UCTH including steady power supply and the consideration of a perimeter fencing of the centre,’’ he said.
The group also recommended for incentives for all frontline healthcare workers and those at the isolation centre.
It urged the state government to put strategies in place to prevent patient crowding and implementation of social distancing in all health facilities.
The group also called on the state government to strengthen efforts at preventing illegal entries into the state from border communities.
“Active involvement of all health professional bodies like the Nigerian Medical Association and other professional bodies in the state Covid-19 team is highly recommended,’’ he said.
Responding, Edu said that the state was more concerned in prevention and shutting down all borders and land entry routes into the state to contain spread of the virus.
“The main focus of the state right now is on prevention. That is why we have shut down all entry routes into the state.
“The governor has released 50 vehicles to ensure that the order of border closure and no mask no movement and public gatherings are enforced.
“At this moment, our priority is not to build an isolation centre, but to deploy all human and material resources to ensure that no case of Covid-19 is recorded in the state,’’ she said.
She appealed to the Federal Government to deploy more essential facilities to the isolation centre at UCTH, adding that the taskforce team under her control would do its best in preventing the spread of the virus into the state.