Health workers in Bayelsa State have emerged as the most vulnerable group in contracting the Coronavirus in the state. So far, 82 health workers from the state have tested positive for the virus.
The state has 245 total confirmed cases, out of which 127 have been discharged while 102 are currently receiving treatment. A total of 16 deaths have been recorded, including that of a health worker.
The National Association of Resident Doctors (NARD) Niger Delta University Teaching Hospital (NDUTH) Okolobiri, Yenagoa Local Government Area, had recently called off their strike action of three weeks, in order to allow the state government look into their grievances, which include the protection of health workers and payment of hazard allowances.
The high rate of infection of health workers and the high ratio of deaths at 6.8 per cent, which is higher than the national figure, have constituted a thorn in the flesh of Governor Douye Diri and the COVID-19 state task force.
In order to check the rising spread of the disease, Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs) have been provided to health facilities in the state to protect health workers.
The task force has also bemoaned the activities of churches in the state who have refused to comply with the social distancing rules. As a major stakeholder in the fight against the pandemic, the church should collaborate with the task force to ensure that the social distancing rules are enforced to the letter. Alas, things have fallen apart as they are not helping matters.
This necessitated the meeting between Governor Diri and Christian religious leaders in which he pointed out that the church must be ready to abide by the health protocols and safety guidelines of the state ministry of health and the task force to prevent the spread of the disease.