A non-governmental organization, the Isoko Monitoring Group (IMG) has lamented the failure of the Delta State Government to put in place sophisticated Covid-19 testing centres across the state.
The group which acknowledged the existences of Covid-19 cases in the state, decried the poor and lack of necessary facilities for Covid-19 testing.
Delta State is currently served by a testing centre at the Irrua Specialist Hospital in neigbouring Edo State.
In a statement by its Spokesman, Dr. Kingsley Oroh, IMG said: “It is no longer news that the most dreaded viral infection of our time, Covid-19, which has placed the entire world on a standstill, has gained its way into our beloved state.
“While we want to commend the government for the lockdown, the dusk to dawn curfew and its food bank initiative, IMG want to state categorically that more needed to be done if we must save the lives of our people.
“For instance, it is quite unfortunate, irresponsible, unwholesome and unfair for a state as rich as Delta with a population of over five million people not to have put together a highly sophisticated Covid-19 testing centres across the state. How do we survive this deadly pandemic as a State under such circumstances?
“Transporting samples of Covid-19 to Edo State for testing is inappropriate and totally unacceptable especially given that since the index case was reported in China and in many countries across Europe and America, Delta State had more than 60 days to have been prepared for this war against Covid-19 and procurement of testing facilities should have been prioritized.
“To survive Covid-19, we need to take testing very important and serious, so that patients of the novel Coronavirus can be attended to on time to avoid spread of the virus.
“Additionally, there is serious need for the government to prioritize the health and welfare of reported Covid-19 patients; we have received alarming reports that suggested poor and inhumane treatment of these patients making them to feel worthless and hopeless.
He stated that the healthcare workers should be educated and admonished to be professional in their conducts, as their actions and inactions will work on the psychology of patients which could either make them stronger to defeat Covid-19 or give up on life.
“Attitudes that lead to the latter must be avoided and strongly discouraged. Meal, medication and needed attention as well as encouragement should be given to patients when it is needed. This is how to win this war not through professional negligence or what have you.
“May we also advise the government to as a matter of public health provide necessary data such as local government areas where cases of Covid-19 have been confirmed to the general public.
“This will go a long way to reawaken the consciousness of Deltans to strictly observe preventive measures and guidelines given by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC). Such information will also help Deltans to obey the lockdown ordered by the state government and understand the importance of staying at home during this critical period.
The group commended all the frontline health workers and security officers, who are putting their lives on the line to save the lives of Deltans, and urged the Delta State government to as a matter of urgency provide sufficient protective kits for these persons and also prioritize their welfare.