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Shock As 181 Students, Staff Contract COVID-19 In Lagos Private Boarding School

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At least 181 students and staff members at the private school located in a suburb of Lekki have tested positive for COVID-19 during surveillance and case investigation, Health Commissioner has announced.

The total population of the school, which is comprised of students and staff, is 441, the Lagos State government stated.

Akin Abayomi explained that a 14-year-old SS1 female student took ill on the 3rd of October and was sent home after receiving first aid at the school.

He added that the student subsequently tested positive for COVID-19 on Tuesday 6th of October in one of the accredited private laboratories in Lagos.

In a press statement made available to Grassroots.ng and signed by the Director, Public Affairs at the state health ministry, Mr. Tunbosun Ogunbanwo, the Commissioner assured Lagosians that the state government, through the incident command system, has the situation under control, stressing that appropriate steps have been taken to contain the spread and manage the positive cases.

He noted that all parents have been contacted and counselled via a family zoom call on 13th October to further allay their fears, while communication between school authorities and parents continues.

The zoom call was attended by the commissioners for Health and Education and all relevant responders and stakeholders, the statement said.

“There is a total lockdown and movement restriction in the school with the Epidemiology and Surveillance Pillar of the emergency operations centre and Ibeju-Lekki LGA State Disease Surveillance and Notification Officer reporting at the school daily to conduct further investigation while positive students and staff have been isolated on the premises and given the COVID-19 home-care treatment packs and are being monitored in isolation within the school premises,” Abayomi said.

The Commissioner stated that the school authorities, supported by the State Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Education, are following the COVID-19 guidelines as set out by the government.

According to him, “Students are to be isolated in the school premises and if unwell, they will be admitted in one of the accredited isolation centres in Lagos.

“Students are discouraged from going home to avoid infecting members of their families”.

Continuing, the release said, “The Ministry of Health is working closely with the Ministry of Education to jointly manage this minor but significant outbreak in this boarding school.

“I am pleased to announce that all the infected students are predominantly asymptomatic while some have very mild symptoms, no student has required hospitalization.

“Members of the Emergency Operation Center and our counterparts in the Ministry of Education have been deployed to the school to provide strategic interventions and support to the school.

“This includes psychosocial support, infection prevention control, medical monitoring and risk communication experts to further enlighten and educate affected people.”

The Commissioner re-emphasised the need for citizens to practise the highest standard of personal and environmental hygiene, stressing the use of face mask in public places, proper hand washing and maintaining physical distance will help prevent the spread of the infection.

“COVID-19 is still very much with us and we must strive to prioritize the safety of all, including students and teachers, by adhering strictly to prevention protocols and guidelines issued by the government to prevent its spread,” Abayomi said.

He urged Lagosians to call the 08000EKOMED or 08000356633 toll-free line if they notice any sign or symptoms of COVID-19, which include fever, cough, sore throat, fatigue or loss of taste or smell.

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FG Charges Striking Doctors To Resume While Negotiations Continue

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The Federal Government has appealed to the National Association of Resident Doctors (NARD) to put aside their industrial action while negotiation to end dispute continues.

The Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige made the appeal during an interview on Channels Television’s Sunday Politics, as the resident doctors strike enters Day 59.

“I want to appeal to NARD for them to reconsider their position, get back to work tomorrow or next and then come back again for discussions. We have so many things to discuss,” Ngige said.

“I have nephews who are resident doctors. I have three of them at the Nnamdi Azikiwe Teaching Hospital, UNTH Enugu, Orthopaedic Hospital, Enugu. I have so many of them. I have a son who will graduate in Medicine in October. I cannot destroy the profession, I have to protect the profession too.”

The Minister also reacted to the court case filed by the Federal Government against the striking doctors.

According to Ngige, it is the Federal Ministry of Health and the office of the Attorney General of the Federation that can withdraw the case from court.

“The court has ruled and said ‘Go and do some more settlement but meanwhile, you go back to work and continue the settlement’,” he added.

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Peter Obi Donates N100m To Upgrade Shanahan Nursing, Midwifery School To College.

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Mr. Peter Obi, former Governor of Anambra, has donated N100,000,000 (Hundred million naira) to Bishop Shanahan Specialist Hospital Nsukka (BSSHN) to upgrade its School of Nursing and Midwifery to a College.

BSSHN is a missionary hospital owned and managed by Nsukka Catholic Diocese.

Obi made the donation in Nsukka, Nsukka Local Government Area of Enugu State on Tuesday, Sept. 6, 2021 when he paid a visit to Shanahan School of Nursing and Midwifery.

He said nurses and midwifes remained the foundation of primary healthcare in any country.

“Nurses and midwifes are very fundamental in our primary healthcare and entire health sector.

“If they are equipped and well trained, infant and maternal mortality will be reduced to the barest minimum.

“Investment on health sector is investment on health of humanity,” he said.

Obi said that his visit was as a result of phone call conversation he had with the Administrator of BSSHN, Rev Fr. Greg Onah, who solicited for help to enable the hospital to upgrade its school of nursing and midwifery to a college.

“The N100m I donated today is to ensure that the school is upgraded to a College of Nursing and Midwifery from now to 2023,” he said.

The Peoples Democratic Party Vice-presidential candidate in 2019 general elections urged Bishop Godfrey Onah of Nsukka Catholic Diocese and other church leaders to continue to pray for the country.

“The church should continue to pray for Nigeria especially now the country is facing serious security challenges,” he said.

In a remark, Onah thanked Obi for his generosity and assured him of judicious use of the amount.

“We will continue to appreciate your kindness to Nsukka Catholic Diocese right from the time you were governor of Anambra State until now.

”Obi is one of Nigeria’s former governors and politicians who have maintained the integrity and passion to help the society.

“This is not the first time he is donating to the diocese; the Coaster bus we are using today in school was also donated by Obi when he was governor of Anambra.

“I urge Obi to continue to develops and invest on humanity,” he said.

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VP Osinbajo To Head Health Reform Committee Set Up By President Buhari

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Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo will lead the Health Sector Reform Committee approved by President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday.

The committee is tasked with the development and implementation of a Health Sector Reform programme for Nigeria and expected to work in collaboration with State Governments and the FCT administration.

Malam Garba Shehu, Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, confirmed this development in a statement on Monday in Abuja.

According to the presidential aide, the approval of the committee is sequel to a Health Sector Diagnostic Review Report, developed by a consultant, Vesta Healthcare Partners and the Federal Ministry of Health.

He said the committee would undertake a review of all healthcare reforms adopted in the past two decades and lessons learnt, and factor them into the development of the new health sector reform programme.

He added that the committee, set up for a period of six months, had members drawn from private and public sector, health care management professionals, development partners, representatives from the National Assembly, as well as the Nigeria Governors Forum among others.

Other members are: Gov. Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta ; Dr Osagie Ehanire, Minister of Health; Mr. Alex Okoh Director General, BPE; Prof. Ibrahim Abubakar, Professor in Infectious Disease Epidemiology, University College London and Director of the UCL Institute for Global Health.

Mr Babatunde Irukera, Director General, Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Council; Sen. Ibrahim Yahaya Oloriegbe; Dr Adedamola Dada; Dr Sani Aliyu and Dr Mairo Mandara would also serve in the committee.

Others are: Dr Haliru Yahaya, Emir of Shonga; Prof. Uche Amazigbo ; Director Hospital Services, Federal Ministry of Health; Dr Faisal Shuaib; Prof. Nasiru Sambo; Dr Ifedayo Morayo Adetifa and Dr Gambo Aliyu.

Other members of the committee are: Dr Betta Edu ( Chairman Nigeria Health Commissioners Forum, representing National Council on Health); President Nigeria Medial Association and President Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria;

President, National Association of Nigeria Nurses & Midwives; President, Association of Medical Laboratory Scientists of Nigeria ; Mrs Temi Marcella Awogboro ; Dr Muhammad Sadiq; Dr Azubike Tagbo and World Health Organisation, Nigeria are also members of the committee.

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