By Franca Ofili
The World Health Organisation (WHO) has donated 26 ventilators and 3,560 fingertip oxygen pulse for the management of patients in isolation and treatment facilities, as well as home-based patients in Nigeria.
The Country Representative, Dr Walter Kazadi, presented the donation to the Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, on Thursday in Abuja.
Kazadi said that Nigeria had performed relatively well in terms of timely containing each of the last two waves and maintaining a national case fatality rate of 1.3 per cent, a level that was half the regional average.
According to him, with the third wave now upon the country, the expectations from all are not any less.
He added that “it is against this backdrop we wish to demonstrate our continued support of the ministry’s efforts in further strengthening the country’s capacity in case management.
“This is in addition to our ongoing support across all pillars of the country’s COVID-19 response at federal and state levels.
“To this end, we wish to donate 26 ventilators and 3,560 fingertip oxygen pulse oximeters for the management of patients in isolation and treatment facilities, as well as home-based patients.”
He said that since the first case of COVID-19 in Nigeria on Feb. 27, 2020, Nigeria had passed through the stages of having sporadic cases, clusters of cases and community transmission.
Kazadi noted that with the COVID-19 outbreak reaching a stage with increasing numbers in the country, and around the globe, it was imperative to have a strong response in all pillars.
“As of the beginning of August 2021, about 15 months into the outbreak, Nigeria reached 175,264 confirmed cases, the majority (over 94 per cent) had been successfully treated and discharged. Unfortunately, 2,163 died,’’ he said.
The WHO country representative said he believed the donation would complement government’s notable initiatives.
He added that the donation would also help to address identified gaps in readiness for the third wave that was being driven by the COVID-19 Delta variant.
Ehanire thanked the organisation and UN agencies that had contributed in training staff to carry out their functions properly.
He said the ministry would ensure adequate distribution of the items donated as some areas may need it more than others.
The minister noted that efforts to eliminate the COVID-19 pandemic required the collaboration of all countries.
According to him, the equipment will help to reduce mortality in the country. (NAN)
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