Coronavirus News

COVID-1,: NCDC Not Responsible For Patients’ Evacuation, To Isolation Centres, Says DG

Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu, the Director-General, Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), says it is the responsibility of State Governments to evacuate COVID-19 patients to medical facilities for treatment.

Ihekweazu disclosed this while fielding questions on Monday. He was speaking at the 49th joint national briefing of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 in Abuja. Equally important, Ihekweazu stated that the NCDC cannot forcefully take a patient to the hospital; as it is not a law enforcement agency.

According to 1stnews, Specifically, the NCDC DG was reacting to a viral video showing a patient being forcefully evacuated.

He said while he could not vouch for any health officer’s conduct in the country; the evacuation of patients remained the duty of the state governments.

“Every state has a responsibility for evacuation. As we start increasing the inclusion of the private sector in care; you would find that more people would start evacuating patients with the private sector services.

‘‘So, there is a whole spectrum of possibilities that could have happened.

“What we don’t do as health workers is to use force to evacuate patients to provide them care. That would be a very unusual reaction. We are not law enforcement and we are not trained in law enforcement.

“We never use force to evacuate patients. If we have difficulty and there are specific circumstances because of public health reasons why an evacuation has to happen; we would invite our friends in the (security) services to support us in that act,” Ihekweazu said.

Meanwhile, Nigeria’s COVID-19 infections on Monday, surpassed the 29,000 cases as the NCDC announced 575 new confirmed cases.

The NCDC said on its official Twitter handle, late Monday that the total number of infections from the virus has risen to 29,286 in the country.

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