As Lagos State and many other states of the federation have been witnessing what has been described as the second wave of COVID-19 with unprecedented rising figures of infected people on a daily basis, the Lagos State Chapter of the Nigeria Medical Association (NMA) has called on the Lagos State Governor, Mr Babajide sanwo-Olu to put some restrictions in place so as to discourage the spread of the virus.
Speaking with Pharmanewsonline in a Telephone interview on Friday, the Chairman of the Lagos State Chapter of the association, Dr Tunji Adenekan appealed the Lagos State Governor to as a matter of urgency, give an order for sincere enforcement on non-pharmaceutical guidelines to prevent the further spread of the virus in the state which has been considered as the epicentre of the deadly virus.
The NMA Chairman expressed serious concern with the way people, especially in Lagos, the nation’s commercial capital, have been disregarding the World Health Organisation’s guidelines against the spread of the virus; saying the current second wave is the consequence of the disregard for the stipulated guidelines in the past month.
“It is really disturbing despite all the warnings we have been sending out. It is true that the figures at a point went down drastically because we were able to curtail it, but even at that, we never stop sensitising and sending warning signals out to people, especially to Lagosians that the virus is still very much around.
Many people throw caution into the wind as if the virus has gone completely. We were telling people to adhere to the protocols and guidelines as we returned to normal activities, but Lagosians and many Nigerians at large disregarded the protocol, thinking everything is normal. What we are seeing now is the outcome of November and December parties, Christmas activities and disregard for the protocol”, the NMA chairman said.
To contain the spread of the virus, Adenekan call for sincere enforcement, like fine for those without mask as well as dispersing of crowds without causing another crisis. He reiterated that placement of restriction is necessary, adding that the government should not necessarily lockdown the state again provided people obey the protocol that prevent the spread of the virus, stressing that the essence of lockdown is to force people to comply and ensure that people are not transferring the virus to one another.
He said :“lockdown is not something that is good. It has its disadvantages, a lot of people died during the last lockdown because they couldn’t go to hospital; some people were depressed, some couldn’t feed themselves. So I want to urge people to make sacrifice by obeying the laid down protocols. People should not act in a way that will make the government to have no option than to lockdown.
“Governor Sanwo-Olu has said he’s not considering lockdown and that is because of the negative effect of the previous lockdown and I agreed with him. However, there must some partial restriction and serious enforcement, the government will never consider lockdown as the first option, it is the last resort when people are not obeying the protocol”, Adenekan said.
Adenekan lamented the second wave of the virus, saying the doctors are at the receiving end as they are exposed to infected people, noting that medical personnel are losing their lives every day to the virus.
“Unfortunately, in Nigeria today, our current ratio is one doctor to 5,000-6000 Nigerians, so when we lose one doctor, about 6,000 Nigerians will not be able to get medical services. Nevertheless, as an association, we will continue to do our best by not just attending to patients but also creating awareness that covid-19 is real and very much here in the country. We continue to guide ourselves on infection prevention guidelines”, the NMA Chairman said.