The Nigerian Medical Association (NMA), has issued a directive to all medical associations across the country.
According to the directive, all medical associations are to suspend their industrial actions and return back to work until after the coronavirus (COVID-19) scourge has been effectively contained.
Dr Francis Faduyile, the President of the NMA, in a press briefing stated that ; “In line with the above we direct all medical associations that have declared industrial actions against their management to suspend all actions as the National NMA shall take over the dispute and interact with the different organs/agencies of government.
“In this regards ARDs of FCTA, Gombe, ESUT-Parklane and Kaduna as well as NMA Cross Rivers are directed to report back to work and treat Nigerians.
“This gesture is geared to treat fellow Nigerians notwithstanding the inhuman treatment meted on our members nationwide.
“The NMA shall not hesitate to take appropriate action(s) against government organs/agencies that fail to reciprocate this gesture by honouring agreements with their workers after containing this COVID-19 scourge.
“The national NMA committee on emerging and re-emerging disease shall be strengthened to interact with the Federal Government in an effort to see that COVID-19 scourge is contained and wiped off this country.
“We direct all state NMA to set up a 5-man committee of health professionals – including doctors, pharmacists, and nurses to monitor the level of preparedness and management of our hospitals. This committee should interact with the different committees set up by their respective State Governors and FCT Minister.”
On the self-isolation strategy by the federal government, Dr. Faduyile said; “The policy on self-isolation is one of the ways to and accepted international league and NMA supports it.
“However for Nigeria we need to go beyond that because we have peculiar issues. For example, for those living in face-me-I face-you apartment, how do you do self-isolation; the man who sits in a one or two room apartment with five or six, how do you want to enforce self-isolation.
“So we need to look at ways in which we can enforce it appropriately in our country”.
“As a professional body saddled with the responsibilities of caring for humanity, we have taken into cognizance efforts being made by our government at different levels and we wish to commend their efforts so far.
“The NMA has therefore set out the following guidelines towards the management of COVID-19 in Nigeria. All medical personnel have been directed to respond positively to this national emergency.
“We call on all doctors both in private and public health facilities to be at their duty post to promptly treat Nigerians who reported to their hospitals.
“We call on ALL health professionals to ensure that they observe international best practice when treating their patients
“We call on the government to provide all the necessary Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to the different hospitals so that health personnel can adequately and appropriately manage their patients.
“We request that isolation wards are upgraded all over the states of the Federation and FCT for proper treatment of those infected with COVID-19,” he added.