The Ministry of Health has said that erratic electricity supply is hampering the nation’s Coronavirus (COVID-19) responses.
Sen Olorunnimbe Mamora, the Minister of State for Health, who stated this on Monday in Abuja at the joint briefing of the task force, explained that epileptic power supply had affected sensitive medical equipment resulting in the disruption of services.
According to Mamora, the COVID-19 pandemic has underscored the need for infrastructural development of the nation’s health system.
“The good thing is that government is determined to address the infrastructural needs of the health system.
“We are exploring opportunities that will guarantee regular and stable power in our hospitals.
“The ministry has met with the management of the Niger Delta Power Holdings Company (NDPHC), to discuss a partnership that will ensure regular power supply to the nation’s teaching hospitals and Federal Medical Centres.
“This partnership will not only ensure steady power supply, but reduce the overhead cost of the hospitals with the savings expected from this initiative ploughed into other areas of need in the hospitals.”
The minister said that as at Monday, the country had recorded 61,440 confirmed cases from 578,841 persons tested for COVID, while 56,611 cases had been discharged.
“We have sadly lost 1,125 persons to the disease. We now have 3,704 active cases as more persons are treated and discharged with case fatality rate of 1.8 percent.
“While most of those infected are between the ages of 21 and 40, the fatalities are higher among older groups, especially those above 60 years with comorbidities. We advise people to take responsibility and protect the older ones among us,” he said.
He said that the government had distributed medical equipment like ventilators and oxygen concentrators to all the federal tertiary hospitals and the states.
“Our experience with managing the pandemic showed that many of those who died could have been saved if they had access to services on time.
“During our intervention in Kano, ambulances were deployed to evacuate cases, especially critical conditions, to hospitals for treatment.
“The National Emergency Medical Services and Ambulance System (NEMSAS) is designed to provide Nigerians with prompt access to medical treatment when needed,” Mamora further explained.
The minister said he had met with the Corps Marshal of the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) to discuss a collaboration for the deployment of critical assets like ambulances, EMT Personnel and communication infrastructure for the Emergency Medical Treatment Programme.
According to him, the collaboration will also ensure that accident victims have access to emergency medical care in health facilities without having to wait for payment or deposit.