The Gombe State Taskforce on Covid-19 has revealed that the data it has now shows evidence of community spread of the Coronavirus in the state.
Speaking to journalists in Gombe, the Chairman of the taskforce, Professor Idris Mohammed, said although the Taskforce was able to keep Gombe communities protected for more than two months, there was evidence that two patients who died recently contracted the virus through the communities, because they had not travelled.
Professor Mohammed said the taskforce would now swing into action, swiftly and carry out a comprehensive investigation to determine the new cases that indicated community transmission, with a large number of members of the Taskforce going into the communities to create awareness and increase the commitment of the community.
“We need to engage the community fully in the fight against Covid-19 because unless we get the maximum cooperation of the community, we are not likely to succeed,” Professor Mohammed said.
The Chairman expressed worry that the public is taking the issue of the Coronavirus and community transmission lightly but hoped it would now take the issues more seriously than ever before.
“You and the taskforce have noticed that people have been going about their business as if it is business as usual ad we have said it severally that it is not business as usual,” Professor Mohammed said.
He said with the laboratory machine and the evidence of community spread now in the state, the taskforce would now start carrying out large tests after the unresolved issues were sorted out between the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control and the Gombe State Government.
Professor Mohammed said the Polymerase Chain Reaction, PCR, Machine has been delivered in the state about ten days ago, but that the issues of space and convenience were being tackled to ensure the safety of the staff of the laboratory, especially those who would carry out the test eventually.
He said this would be sorted out in a matter of two weeks or thereabout, after the adjustments were carried out, which are the expansion of the testing rooms and the installation of cupboards and drawers for safety, saying “safety and quality will not be compromised”.
The Gombe State Taskforce on Covid-19 said there are three positive cases in the Intensive Care Unit of the Specialists’ Hospital, 8 at the holding centre, while the overall active cases in Gombe State now stand at 32.
The Chairman of the Gombe State Taskforce on Covid-19 said the taskforce had withdrawn a category of facemasks it had earlier distributed to the public, but which were of very low standards.
“We will not accept any masks that compromise the safety of the community, particularly, as we know that the community is not as enlightened as members of the taskforce are, so, we have a greater responsibility to protect them,” Professor Mohammed said.
He said apart from donations of facemasks by organizations and individuals, the taskforce had ordered for the production of facemasks, but after some petitions from the public on the substandard quality of the commodity being distributed, it quickly ordered for their withdrawal from circulation.
Source: Voice of Nigeria