Oil & Gas Industry Intervention Initiative on COVID-19

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By Bennett Oghifo

Operators in Nigeria’s oil and gas industry have prepared what they termed intervention initiative to help curtail the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19).

The Oil & Gas Industry Intervention Initiative on COVID-19, a strategy designed to put Nigeria way ahead of the crisis, is led by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), with partners, including Oil Producers Trade Section–29 member companies, Independent Petroleum Producers Group~25 Indigenous Companies, and Service Providers and Downstream Players.

They have 3-Pronged COVID -19 intervention initiative, which will be deplored and the first is provision of Diagnostic and Protective Kits; Testing Kits; Medical Protective Suits; Face Shields; and Lab Scientists Kits. The second will be provision of Logistics and In –Patient Support System; Toyota Hiace (retrofitted Ambulances); Ventilators; Respirators; Oxygen supply facility; and third is Intensive Care facility; an auxiliary/overflow hospital.

There will be a makeshift intensive care facility made by converting spare space in a General hospital or the new NNPC Medical site; ICU beds, the document stated.

The focus of the intervention is highly impacted epicentres, densely populated areas with strong communal transmission of the virus, Operational catchmentareas, and Nationaloutreach.

According to the plan, each of the 36 states will have at least one Toyota Hiace High Roof 2WD 2.5L Turbo Diesel retrofitted ambulance, sets of testing kits and sets of patients supportsystem.

Another component of the Oil & Gas Industry Intervention Initiative on COVID-19 is the CSR Response Message &Plan, tagged We Care. “NNPC and the industry care about the health and safety of the Country, its people and its economy.

“We will act and do the needful to support our health system to combat the COVID 19 pandemic. We shall prevail. A message of hope: With the determination of our people and the help of God, we shall prevail over COVID-19.

“As oil and gas companies committed to HSE, we recognise the importance of the safety of the personnel who are in the frontline of fighting the COVID-19 pandemic. NNPC will thus be leading the charge with industry players to donate the following PPE to protect our health workers and people.

They will provide 10 million surgical masks; 20 thousand N95 respirator masks; 120 thousand safety gloves; 20 thousand protective suits; and 3,000 safety googles.

They will provide hospital and lab equipment. “We also recognize the importance of adequate logistics and equipment to enhance the preparedness and readiness of NCDC to Respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. In order to show we care, the following hospital and laboratory equipment will be donated by NNPC and its partners to help combat the pandemic into oblivion.

They plan to buy 40 ambulances, 10,000 Test Kits, 3,000 oxygen kit, 1,000 ventilators, and four diagnostic laboratories.

In their National Outreach, there will be makeshift intensive care facility in Katsina, Kano, Bauchi, Maiduguri, Ibadan, FCT, Makurdi, Enugu, Owerri, Lagos, Warri, and Port Harcourt.

The execution plan states that on 26 March 2020, there will be partners’ alignment on concept plan; initiative kickoff; consultation with selected states on sites for makeshift ICUs. On 27 March 2020, deployment of testing kits and ambulances to Abuja and Lagos; 28 March 2020, inauguration of Abuja makeshift ICU; deployment of testing kits and ambulance to at least 12 states; 29 March 2020, inauguration of Lagos makeshift ICU; deployment of testing kits and ambulances to at least 12 states; and on 31 March 2020, inauguration of regional makeshift ICU; conclusion of deployment of testing kits and ambulances to at least 12 states.