The Lagos State government has disclosed that seventeen hospitals in the state have been exposed to Coronavirus.
The State Commissioner for Health, Akin Abayomi disclosed this on Tuesday, April 21; even as more fatalities are being recorded in the state.
One of the private hospitals, First Cardiology Consultants Hospital, Ikoyi, was where late Chief of Staff to President Muhammadu Buhari, Abba Kyari; was treated for the virus until his death was announced on Friday.
The others are St. Edwards Hospital, Ajah; Premier Specialist Hospital, Victoria Island; Vedic Lifecare Hospital, Lekki; County Hospital, Ogba; as well as St Nicholas Hospital, Lagos.
The involvement of these private hospitals in the treatment of Coronavirus cases was despite the insistence by Minister of Health in Nigeria; Osagie Ehanire, that they will never be given approval for such.
In a bid to control the situation, Abayomi stated the government will partner with the private sector to manage coronavirus; if a large number of cases are recorded on a day-to-day basis.
He added that the state Ministry of Health, through one of its agencies; Health Facility Monitoring and Accreditation Agency (HEFEMAA), is decontaminating the hospitals’ facilities to help curb the spread of the pandemic.
“Some of the hospitals have also been told to stop admitting patients until the process is complete.
“They have to go through a process of infection prevention and control training of all their staff and if they go through the HEFAMAA certification; they will receive guidelines on how to manage COVID-19 patients in the future should the case arise where the government will partner with the private sector to manage COVID-19.
“This scenario may present itself if we begin to see a very large number of cases on a day-to-day basis and also the Lagos State facility may be overwhelmed,” Abayomi said.
Already, the Lagos State chapter of the Nigeria Medical Association has warned doctors as well as medical practitioners against receiving and treating coronavirus patients in their private facilities; stressing that such practice could put the lives of health workers in danger.
NMA, in a statement signed by Saliu Oseni and Moronkola Ramon, Chairman and Secretary respectively; said there could be an explosion in the number of infections in the state and also the country at large; if private hospitals continued to treat coronavirus patients.
All the named private hospitals are supposed to have been closed down by the government, according to experts; but had been left to continue to operate; because they served the interest of the elites and rich in the country.