Edo Urges Friends, Family Members to Report Oversea Returnees

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The Edo State Government has urged residents in the state to report persons who recently returned to the state from overseas through the emergency helplines and other relevant health authorities, as part of their contribution to curtailing the spread of COVID-19 in the state.

The state government is also establishing over 54 screening centres, with three in each of the 18 Local Government Areas (LGAs) of the state, as part of efforts to curtail the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19).

In a statement issued yesterday, the Special Adviser to the Governor on Media and Communication Strategy, Mr. Crusoe Osagie, said it became necessary for residents to report returnee friends and family members to safeguard the health and safety of other residents following the rise in cases of COVID-19 in Edo State.

He said the basic precautionary measures and hygienic practices, which include keeping safe social distance, avoiding large gatherings and close contact with sick persons, regular hand washing with soap and use of alcohol-based hand sanitisers, must be duly adhered to in order for all residents to be safe and healthy.

According to him, “We are appealing to residents to provide information on their neighbours and family members who recently returned from overseas to help curb the spread of COVID-19 in the state. We must also continue to observe the government’s guidelines against the spread of coronavirus which include the work-at-home order for civil servants, closure of social gatherings of persons above 20 and markets, excluding those trading on essential commodities and imposed stringent guidelines for transporters and hoteliers.”

The governor’s aide continued, “We urge all Edo residents to strictly adhere to these guidelines as the state government ramps up efforts to prevent community transmission of the disease. We implore everyone to continue to remain calm, stay-at-home and be diligent in following social distancing guidelines if they must go out.”
Meanwhile, the state government is establishing over 54 screening centres, with three in each of the 18 Local Government Areas (LGAs) of the state, as part of efforts to curtail the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19).

Commissioner for Health, Dr. Patrick Okundia, who disclosed this to journalists in Benin City, said health workers and other public health professionals have been trained to manage the centres, with the training cascading to different LGAs in the state.

Okundia said the centres, along with the four major testing facilities, including the Stella Obasanjo Hospital; Irrua Specialist Teaching Hospital (ISTH), University of Benin Teaching Hospital and General Hospital, Auchi, will serve as examination points to determine whether residents would need to go for further tests for COVID-19.

The commissioner, however, urged residents not to panic, as the state government has taken serious steps to curtail the spread, and handle cases of coronavirus in the state.

In a related development, the state government has said that the Stella Obasanjo Hospital, which has been repurposed as an infectious diseases centre in response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak in the state, would receive confirmed cases of the disease from Tuesday, April 7.

Commissioner for Health, Okundia, disclosed this while conducting journalists round the Infectious Disease Isolation Unit of the Stella Obasanjo Hospital, in Benin City.

He said the state government has isolation centres in the three senatorial districts of the state, including the Stella Obasanjo Hospital, University of Benin Teaching Hospital (UBTH) and the Ogbe Nursing Home in Edo South; Auchi General Hospital in Edo North and the Irrua Specialist Teaching Hospital in Edo Central.