The Chief Medical Director of University of Calabar Teaching Hospital, Prof. Ikpeme has called on all staff and patient in the hospital to take precautionary measures in protecting themselves against the novel corona virus as according to him, the virus exist in Calabar. The CMD in a circular directed to Heads of Departments, staff and patients of the hospital called on staff to protect themselves saying “The Management of the University of Calabar Teaching Hospital is aware of the agitation and uncertainties associated with corona virus pandemic in the state. With recent developments, it does appear that the state may not be free of COVID-19 as generally believed. A recent rapid test carried out on a patient came out positive. However the patient had recovered and was discharged from our isolation centre last week.”

He called on the health care givers to avail themselves and be prompt in offering services to patients saying “Management therefore urges all staff and patients to protect themselves as maximally as possible”. He added “This is however without prejudice to the fact that the health care givers must make themselves available at all times to provide adequate treatment to patients without fear. Management on the other hand will do everything possible to ensure that staff and patients are adequately protected in line with NCDC guidelines.”

According to Prof. Ikpeme, the NCDC has approved the hospital as an independent testing centre saying “The UCTH management has been in direct contact with the Director General of NCDC, and has approved the hospital as an independent test centre. The implication of this is that henceforth, we do not need to pass samples through the Epidemiology unit of the state as was the case before. The hospital can now send samples directly to NCDC accredited laboratories and while the NCDC works to set up and help accredit our laboratory.”

Prof. Ikpeme called on everybody to work towards protecting themselves saying “We therefore urge everybody to do the needful to ensure that our community is protected from the corona pandemic.” He called for cooperation from all a sundry saying “In furtherance to steps earlier taken to protect our staff, patients and facilities, management will ensure strict compliance with measures geared towards protecting our population. This will involve strict entry and exit protocols inside our facilities. We urge understanding, patience and cooperation”. He added.

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