By Steve Oni, Ilorin
The National Centre for Disease Control, NCDC, has commended the Kwara State Government’s efforts in the fight against novel Coronavirus.
NCDC team leader, Dr Okoli Innocent, who gave the commendation when he led other members of the Centre to the state to inspect laboratories in preparation for the establishment of Molecular Testing Centre in the state to test for the virus, said the Director-General of the NCDC, Dr. Chikwe Ihekweazu, who sent the team on the inspection visit, was appreciative of the Governor AbdulRazaq administration’s strides in the health sector, pledging the NCDC’s support to the state in the fight against COVID-19.
He added that he was not surprised that kwara state is ranked fourth in preparation for health emergency in the country, given the availability of state of the art medical equipment such as ten ventilators, six gene Xperts, ICU beds among others in the state’s health facilities visited by the team.
Dr Okoli who is a Molecular Biology expert gave an assurance that as soon as the team’s final report on staff training and retraining, provision of more molecular diagnostic equipment, as well as reorganisation of laboratories is concluded, the NCDC would swing into action to optimise and increase the state’s testing capacity.
Responding, the Chairman Covid 19 technical committee who is also the state Deputy Governor, Mr Kayode Alabi, represented by the Commissioner for Health, Dr Raji Razaq, appreciated the NCDC for the move to set up Molecular Testing Centre in the state, adding that the priority of Governor AbdulRazaq is to reduce medical tourism, both for diagnosis and treatment, in the state.
Mr Alabi expressed optimism that Kwara would soon own a Molecula laboratory for COVID-19 testing, stressing that the state would no longer have to take samples to Ede in Osun state or Ibadan in Oyo state for testing.
Other members of the Technical Committee who received the NCDC team are Chairman Kwara House of Assembly Committee on Health, Mr Razaq Owolabi, Chairman of Sub committee on Medical Advisory, Dr Femi Oladiji and Dr Oluwatosin Fakayode.
The NCDC team had earlier donated 1000 pieces each of Viral Transport Medium, Swab sticks and Tongue depressors as well as 320 pieces of Falcon Tubes. The team also inspected the Public Health Laboratory, Harmony Diagnostic Centre and the former Sobi Specialist Hospital which has been turned to COVID-19 / Infectious Disease
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