By Victor Ogunje
The 29-year-old woman, who was the third index case of Covid-19 in Ekiti State, has died.
The woman died at the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of the Federal Teaching Hospital, Ido Ekiti Wednesday.
The woman, who was an health worker in Lagos sneaked into Ekiti last week before she fell into prolonged labour leading to the discovery that she had contracted the virus.
The Commissioner for Health, Dr. Mojisola Yaya-Kolade, who confirmed this in Ado Ekiti, at a press conference, said the woman died around 6.58am.
Yaya-Kolade regretted that the late Covid-19 patient infected a 45-year-old medical doctor, who had now been identified as the fourth index case by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC).
“The woman showed signs of stability on Monday, but unfortunately, her condition deteriorated yesterday and we lost her exactly 6.58am today (Wednesday),” the commissioner said.
On whether her body will be released to the family, Yaya-Kolade said the state will take precaution and comply with the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) safety rules on the burial.
“We are going to liaise with the family on her burial. We are going to consider safety despite that there was assumption that the virus is not active in corpses, because we don’t know much about the virus.
“But whatever we are going to do won’t be against the interest of the family. But let me assure you that the state will also be on the side of safety,” she stated.
She said FETHI, where the patient died, had been sanitised and cleaned up since the woman was hospitalized, urging the patients and members of the public not to stigmatise the hospital or afraid of patronising it.
The commissioner stated that the state will proceed with its surveillance and engage the people on sensitization, to ward off Covid-19 in Ekiti.
She added that all the 78 persons who had contacts with the deceased and the medical doctor had been traced and placed in isolation.
The Special Adviser, Office of Transformation and Delivery, Prof. Bolaji Aluko, said all the youths and traditional rulers in Ekiti had been coopted into the border closure policy for efficiency and strict adherence to the rules.
“We have also begun the prosecution of violators of these closures. Fines and community service were being imposed as sanctions.
“The prosecution has been very strict. Those prosecuted and found guilty paid fines less than N10,000 while some were to serve community service,” he said.
Aluko added that the state had received 1,800 bags of rice from the federal government as ordered by President Muhammadu Buhari, being part of the palliatives being distributed to cushion the effect of lockdown on the populace.
“Various community organisations and groups are helping in distributing them to our people.
“We are also operating the keep-your-neighbours programme. It has been kicked off. This is where identifiable vulnerable people are contacted and get food packs for survival directly in their homes,” he said.