…16 others gone into self-isolation
By Bashir Bello
Barely 24 hours after, the National President of the Nigeria Society of Physiotherapy, Dr Rufai Yusuf Ahmad said four of it members have tested positive for coronavirus in Bauchi, Kano, Lagos and Jigawa states respectively.
Dr. Ahmad said it also lost one in Uyo, the state capital of Akwa Ibom state.
The body’s President disclosed this in an interview with VANGUARD on Wednesday in Kano.
This was coming as the Chairman, Nigerian Medical Association, Kano State chapter, Dr Sunusi Muhammad Bala on Tuesday said it lost a doctor while 32 others tested positive to the dreaded disease in the state.
Dr. Ahmad said, “the occupational hazard which frontline health professionals are exposed to is being brought to fore in the ongoing fight against the covid-19 pandemic. The number of health professionals that have contracted the novel coronavirus keeps surging and there is a need to do more to protect them.
“Report reaching us as at now has it that four Physiotherapists have contracted Covid-19 while discharging their duties.
The first incident, as confirmed by our source, was reported in Bauchi, the second incident occurred in Kano while the third and now the fourth in Lagos and Jigawa states respectively. Other 16 physiotherapists that came in contact with confirmed cases of Covid-19 have gone into self-isolation. The death of a Physiotherapist/Medical doctor who died in Uyo some weeks ago is still also fresh in our memories.
“Physiotherapists are healthcare professionals who, by training and practice, assess, diagnose, treat and rehabilitate patients using physical modalities.
“The nature of the physiotherapy profession is such that direct contact is most of the time a must to achieve any reasonable results, and more often than not, Physiotherapy management cannot be deferred. Delay of treatment brings about complications which sometimes are irreversible, pushing a simple impairment into a secondary impairment which can eventually lead to permanent disability or even death.
“Any invasive procedure requires physiotherapy for the utmost restoration of functions and healing of wounds to shorten the time on the bed, therefore preventing some serious risks of prolonging stay on the bed, like bedsores, deep vein thrombosis.
“The Nigeria Society of Physiotherapy (NSP), the umbrella association of Nigerian Physiotherapists, hereby call on the government, at all levels as well as private healthcare facilities to provide adequate and appropriate PPEs for physiotherapists and other frontline health professionals in their employ.
“Physiotherapists will continue to discharge their responsibilities in ensuring that patients receive the best care and return to function and independence, as much as achievable,” Dr Ahmad however said.