An Abuja-based Public Health Specialist, Dr Patrick Chinedu, has called for community involvement in the reopening of schools to avoid further spread of coronavirus.
Chinedu, who made the call in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria in Abuja on Tuesday, said that community involvement in the process would facilitate information diffusion and trust building.
He said that institutional stakeholders, such as the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19and the World Health Organisation should involve communities on the reopening process to ensure acceptability.
NAN recalls that PTF had, on Monday, announced Federal Government’s approval of resumption for students in graduating classes.
The PTF had said that the decision was to enable students and pupils in the affected classes to prepare for their final examinations.
The health expert said that involving community-based structures would enliven local and reliable communication sources, which would be useful in disseminating information about the pandemic
He further stated that community-involvement would not only spread the information about schools’ resumption, but would also deepen the knowledge about the COVID-19 preventive measures.
“To effectively respond to health crises, local structures are needed to establish regular communication channels to ensure effective management.
“Information is best shared, using sources adjudged credible by community people. Communication channels should, therefore, be selected based on their potential reach and local norms,” he said.
Edited By: Azubuike Okeh and (NAN)