By Isaac Olamikan, Senior Correspondent, Benin
Worried by the alarming rate of community spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) in Edo, the state government has appealed to residents to present or report themselves through the Edo State COVID-19 toll free response lines following any recent travel from high COVID-19 incident states within the country or contacts with persons with symptoms of the virus.
The Edo State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Patrick Okundia who made the appeal while speaking to journalists in Benin City, blamed most deaths recorded in the state on late detection and treatment as a result of non-adherence to the self-reporting guideline.
According to him, compliance to the self-isolation, social distancing, and self-reporting guidelines by all residents will further bolster government’s efforts in containing the coronavirus pandemic and protecting the lives of the state’s aged population which accounts for over 60 percent of the deaths recorded.
Okundia while calling on all residents to turn out for the screening and testing exercise currently ongoing across the state, said, “The Edo State Government encourages everyone with symptoms of the disease or who have had any form of contact with confirmed cases to come out for screening, testing and treatment as early detection is key to containing the virus. When detected early, a patient’s chance for survival increases.
He continued, “Stay at home and observe all precautionary measures against the spread of the infectious disease, including regular handwashing with soap under running water and the use of alcohol-based hand sanitisers. Cover your mouth and nose properly when sneezing and/or coughing.
“Two new toll-free lines for COVID-19 response have been introduced by Edo State Government to strengthen the initial lines from the State Ministry of Health and the World Health Organisation (WHO) distributed at the onset of the outbreak. If you have any COVID-19 symptoms, please 08001235111 or 08002200110 for assistance”.