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Health Workers At Ebola’s Quarantine Centre In Lagos Down Tool

Health workers attending to Ebola patients at the Isolation Centre in Lagos have down tool following negative reports that they are not doing enough.

If this continues, some of the Ebola patients at the centre may die soon, unless something urgent is done to salvage the situation.

Governor Babatunde Fashola, while speaking with newsmen in Lagos, Nigeria said the report reaching him was that some of the workers at the centre felt not appreciated and had decided to stop work because of media report.

“The report reaching me about two hours ago was that some of the health workers at the centre felt not appreciated and they decided to stop work because of the media report that they were not working effectively to save the lives of the victims.

“We do not need that at the moment. While we sympathise with the victims, the health workers are doing their best to care for the victims. My appeal to the people is that more health workers should sign up. And from what I was told by experts was that even if one is the best physician in the world, the person cannot enter the isolation ward.

“He or she has to be trained on how to kit up and how to get out of the centre. And the training takes between five and seven days to achieve. Even if we have the full complement of the doctors signing up today, it is risky to put them inside the isolation centre without adequate training. People must understand the process required,” he said.

He added that “when it appears to the people that nothing was being done, it was because we are still building up capacity at the facility. We are better off today than 10 days ago. We know that it is complain that comes out of empathy but it is complain that does not focus on the reality of what is going on.”

The governor said he sympathized with the victims who were affected by the virus, as government understood the trauma and concern the family members were going through, noting that when all of that is taking into account, it was not true that that the patients were not being taken care of.

According to him, the reality was that this is a difficult time as government was gaining capacity daily, adding “this is not what we expected and it is not what we planned for and getting people who are sufficiently knowledgeable and skilful to go into the isolation centre is quite challenging. It is a matter of monumental courage for those people who have signed up and we commend them for that.

“There is personnel capacity issue of those who can go into the centre and care for the patients, in a way that they will not be infected by the virus. The personal protective equipment they use is very effective so that they are protected. And therefore it is uncomfortable because ideally no doctor should stay in the isolation centre for any undue lent of time.

“The ideal thing is that to have teams going into the isolation centre for short period and rest while another team resume. The issue we have now is that our teams are working flat-out and therefore there will be no opportunity to segregate any patients. There will be no such opportunity.”



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