The National Association of Nigerian Nurses and Midwives (NANNM), Jos University Teaching Hospital (JUTH) chapter, on Monday, ordered its members working at the hospital’s isolation centre to sit at home over alleged negligence of their welfare and lack of safety.
The chairman of the chapter, Mrs. Mercy Lenka, told journalists during a protest in Jos that the directive was necessary as the members were risking their lives working under difficult and stringent conditions at the centre.
She stressed that the standard practice in other parts of Nigeria and the world was for special accommodation to be provided for the nurses, and not living with their families while caring for patients.
Lenka said: “Our members and other patients are at risk of getting infected with the disease at the unit.
“Particularly, we are taking this action because a patient was managed in the ward and it turned out that he became a suspected patient and the result turned out to be positive.
“All the people who nursed this patient were tested because of the exposure and then a nurse working at the centre tested positive.
“We raised an eyebrow when we saw the temporary arrangement made by the hospital for suspected cases, which was just a cloth demarcation at the casualty unit.
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“We also called the attention of the infectious unit of the hospital, but they said the patients will not be kept for up to two hours there for their samples to be taken.
“It will interest you to know that a patient has been there since Friday, while a patient was brought last night presenting classical symptoms of COVID-19, yet his samples are yet to be taken.
“This is a risk to other patients in that unit and the nurses there who do not have Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs).”