The Adamawa State government has said that it will renovate the psychiatric section of the state Specialist Hospital in Yola to serve as isolation centre for the treatment of suspected COVID-19 patients.
The state commissioner for health, Professor Abdullahi Isa, who dropped the hint while addressing journalists on Monday, said the decision in compliance with the federal government’s directive that each state must have at least a 30-bed facility for the treatment of COVID-19.
“Following the directive by the federal government, we have been working all through the weekend to see how we can adequately comply.
“The German hospital we early resorted to cannot contain the number of beds required, that is why we have to decide to use the psychiatric hospital. Luckily for us, there is no single patient there now,” Isa said.
He stated that the renovation would commence immediately to meet up with WHO standard and recommendation as he further affirmed that no single confirmed case has been recorded in the state yet.
He said the ministry received a call from Shelleng local government of a woman who had running nose and fever.
”Our surveillance team visited the community and found out that it was just common cold and not COVID-19,” he said.
Prof. Isa emphasised on the need to stop stigmatisation of those with common cold and pneumonia as it was with the woman in Shelleng.
“We were surprised to noticed that people in her community ran away as far as 500 meters from the woman, this is not what we are advising people to do”, he said.
The commissioner explained further, “What we are advocating is for people to maintain social distancing and report any suspected case, not run away from patients please.”
He added that some members of the community reported that the suspected woman returned from Lagos few weeks ago, that was what prompted their actions.
A similar case was recorded at a private hospital in Yola the state capital, where nurses of the hospital reportedly ran away after hearing that the patient just returned from Malaysia.
“We received a call from a doctor at a private hospital that a patient came with fever, cough and running nose. The doctor told us that all the nurses on duty and other patients ran away because they suspected that patient had coronavirus.
“We transferred the patient to the specialist hospital for further examination and we took his sample and sent it to Abuja for further examination,” he said.