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COVID-19: PTF to conclude assessment of lockdown relaxation within next 70 hours

The Chairman of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19, Boss Mustapha, said on Thursday the team would conclude its assessment on the impact of measures put in place for the relaxation of the COVID-19 lockdown within the next 70 hours.

Mustapha, who is also the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), disclosed this at the PTF daily briefing in Abuja.

He said when concluded, the recommendations would be submitted to the president for his decision.

Mustapha decried the continued refusal by medical institutions including federal tertiary institutions to receive and treat patients for fear of COVID-19.

He lamented that the development had resulted in several unfortunate and avoidable fatalities.

The SGF noted that Nigeria was having more deaths from non-attendance to other diseases than COVID-19, adding that the reason for the greater emphasis on COVID-19 was because it was a pandemic that had the capacity of wiping out large segments of the Nigerian population.

He urged all the Chief Medical Directors and private health service providers to attend to other health challenges which had continued to confront Nigerians on a daily basis.

He stressed that the guidelines for dealing with patients presenting COVID-19 like symptoms were available and if these were applied by the medical service providers, there would be lesser risks of exposure to the virus.

The SGF said: “Statistics has shown that there is a drastic drop in the percentage of attention being paid to other ailments not related to COVID-19.

READ ALSO: PTF calls for research into COVID-19

“This situation is made worse by the fact that federal tertiary institutions have been mentioned among those rejecting patients for fear of COVID.

“This is not acceptable. We are saddened by this development.

“The Minister of Health has reached out to all medical directors directing them to continue providing regular medical services so that we do not end up with avoidable deaths.

“Truth be told, we are having more deaths from non-attendance to other diseases than even COVID-19.

“The reason for the greater emphasis on COVID-19 is because it is a pandemic and if not curtailed has a capacity of wiping out large segments of our population.”

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