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Lagos expands Covid-19 testing, treatment to PHCs, private hospitals

Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu opened the 110-bed space COVID-19 isolation centre inside Onikan Stadium, Lagos.
FILE PHOTO: Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu opened the 110-bed space COVID-19 isolation centre inside Onikan Stadium, Lagos.

Lagos says it is increasing its isolation capacity and introducing community management of cases, by accrediting and incorporating primary health care facilities and private healthcare facilities for the management of mild-to-moderate cases of COVID-19 patients.

As at Saturday, Lagos has recorded 1,667 confirmed cases of Covid-19, with 1,186 hospitalised for treatment.

The state has begun biweekly procurement of laboratory needs to prevent running out of the materials going forward, until at least 120,000 tests are done in a about two months, said Lagos governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, while updating the state on Covid-19.

He said Lagos has paid for more than 20,000 extraction kits and placed order for another 20,000 in a bid to test at least 120,000 in the next 60 days.

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He said, “50% of the backlog, I spoke about recently, has been cleared which is also responsible for the recent seemingly high rate of positive cases in the last couple of days. Suppliers of kits are the manufacturers and their local representatives; however, the bid is open to any company with repute and integrity who can supply the desired kits to specification.

“I have also mandated the state laboratory apparatus to commence the local production of certain items used for the diagnostic process and this has commenced already. We must be careful to ensure that this is not done at the expense of the capacity required to handle other medical cases.”

A total 448 people have been discharged from hospital after treatment, but 33 have died—a 32% increase.

Sanwo-Olu called the trend of recoveries encouraging.

“We believe it will continue at this rate. It gives us some of the much-needed confidence to face the difficult days and weeks ahead. I have said before, that the success of our efforts, at ramping up testing, is part of the reason why we are seeing a significant escalation in the number of cases in the State,” he said.

“Quite clearly, also, we are firmly in the community transmission stage of the infection, and the only way to be sure we are making all the right decisions is ensuring that we continue to scale up testing. We now have four testing facilities in Lagos State, and we remain grateful to the NCDC and all other partners who are involved. Our combined lab capacity is at about 850 tests daily. This is easily scalable to 1500 and 2000 subject to the availability of extraction kits considering the acute global shortage,” he said.

He recalled that the Commissioner for Health, Professor Akin Abayomi on Friday disclosed that the State’s data modelling estimates that by July, there may have been as many as 120,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19. “That is a projection, it does not necessarily have to be our reality. However, the only way to ensure that projections do not become reality, is taking the projections as a warning, and using them to influence and modify our behaviour towards greater compliance and discipline,”

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