Delta state commissioner for health, Dr. Ononye Mordi, has given reasons why some persons who contracted the coronavirus were treated at home rather than the isolation centres specially designed for treating the COVID-19 patients.
In an interview with select online journalists in his office, the health commissioner said some persons prefer being in their homes, adding that home based care provides opportunity for people to be relaxed psychologically.
He also said besides relaxation and being psychologically okay, the home care makes recovery faster, noting that for now that the curve is getting flattened, attention is being shifted to the home care for patients.
Further investigation, however, revealed that people with mild symptoms of the coronavirus are left to be treated at home, while those who have severe and critical cases are evacuated to the hospitals.
Emerald News also learnt that the younger and the aged persons who are more susceptible to the disease are also taken to the centres while other middle aged persons are left at home.
The investigation revealed that people who, though are in the middle ages but have severe and critical cases are evacuated to the centres for proper attention.
In the course of the interview, the commissioner told the journalists under the aegis of Online Media Practitioners Association of Nigeria (OMPAN) that the state government had tested over 7500 persons for COVId-19 in the state.
But with the understanding of the population of Delta state and the number of persons so far tested, the commissioner said what the team is doing now is community engagement.
He said: “We are going to the communities, telling them not to relax but they should submit themselves for testing. He also said the number of infections has dropped drastically, hence the state government is scaling down operations at the treatment centres.
He listed the centres to include FMC, Asaba specialist hospital, Warri central hospital, Oghara teaching hospital, and the stadium but investigation showed that the centre at the stadium had not been put to use due to reduction of cases in Delta state.
For now, he said, staff strength at the COVID-19 centres has reduced, saying “we can’t have a bloated staff when cases have scaled down in the state.”
Answering a question on whether the ministry is collaborating with the schools in maintaining the COVID-19 protocols as recommended by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), the commissioner said monitoring teams are going from school to school to speak to the students on COVID-19.
On provision of COVID-19 prevention kits to the schools, he said the state government provides for the public schools while the proprietors of private schools whom he described as people in business should provide for their schools.
Dr. Mordi specially commended online media practitioners as being the people needed in this digital age to carry out needed information to the people, especially in this period of people’s pessimism to the coronavirus pandemic.
He said: “Online reporting has become very important. It is a veritable tool of information dissemination. However, it has carried both good and bad news. Many have used it to their advantage while others have used it on the contrary. Some are responsible while others are not.
“In these days of COVID-19, the online media has played a very critical role in its containment. Globally, the world has changed. There are challenges coming from new ways of life. Society is now reacting to the new ways we are emphasizing. It is a changing world but we need the online media to help us drive the changes.
“Government has been very proactive and supportive in the fight against COVID-19. A lot is being done. But there is a lot of counterproductive activities we need to change so that figures do not shoot up again. The online media has been a big time partner in COVID-19 containment in Delta state.”