Metro  

Oyo records 20 COVID-19 fresh cases, discharges 16

Says confirmed cases now 1,726
• Ekiti NMA vows to continue strike, says members not insensitive

Oyo State Governor Seyi Makinde yesterday said that the confirmation tests for 20 suspected COVID-19 cases came back positive. He said the state had also discharged 16 patients after receiving their second test results.

The governor, who stated this in a series of tweets, said: “Sixteen confirmed COVID-19 cases received their second negative test results and have been discharged, bringing the total number of discharged cases in Oyo State to 1,008.

“ The cases are from Oluyole (five), Ido (three), Egbeda (three), Ibadan South East (two), Ibadan North (two), Lagelu (two), Ibadan South West (two) and Akinyele (one) local councils.

“So, the total number of confirmed cases in Oyo State today is 1,726.”

In another development, the Nigeria Medical Association (NMA), Ekiti State Chapter, has defended its members over the strike they embarked upon despite the COVID-19 challenges.

It said that the poor welfare conditions of medical doctors operating in the state compelled the situation.

The NMA, therefore, pleaded with members of the public not to perceive its members as being insensitive to the COVID-19 pandemic ravaging the nation and the danger it poses to the populace as they vowed to continue the strike.

In a statement in Ado-Ekiti, yesterday, the Ekiti NMA Chairman, Dr. Tunji Omotayo, who described the strike as appropriate, said the doctors would only return to their duty posts after their rural, hazard and skipping allowances, as well as other pending welfare issues, were met.

Omotayo said that the doctors embarked on the strike after exhausting 28 days ultimatum issued to the government, but without proper considerations to assure them that their demands would be met.

The NMA boss also sought appropriate placement of promoted officers, saying that the disparity in the conditions of service between the doctors in the employment HMB and other state’s establishment is capable of worsening the already precarious health indices in Ekiti rural and semi-urban communities.

He said: “The implication of failure to implement skipping allowance is that doctors will only endure the hostile working conditions in the employment of the HMB until they can secure a more attractive employment elsewhere. This is the reason why the number of doctors under the employment of the HMB will continue to dwindle.

“Just like skipping, only the doctors in the employment of the HMB are not being paid hazard allowance. Unlike other doctors all over the nation, this has not been paid to HMB doctors for over 10 years.

“For over 10 years, the doctors have endured 50 per cent implementation of rural posting allowance despite assurances to regularise it within six months. Continued migration of their colleagues out of these hospitals without commensurate replacement results in increased workload and loss of motivation.”

Omotayo said that failure to find solutions to this impasse would put pressure on the already overstretched health facilities in the state and that whatever government is doing in the health sector without addressing these issues.

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