The Association of Resident Doctors, University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital (ARD-UITH), on Tuesday advised Nigerians to continue to observe the strict protocol in respect of the newly discovered Omicron variant COVID-19.
The Omicron variant of COVID-19 detected in South Africa is considered highly transmissible and may also present an increased risk of reinfection, compared to other variants of concern (VOCs).
Dr. Badmus Habeeb, the President of the ARD-UITH, gave the advice during a news conference organised to mark the weeklong 38th Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the association.
According to him, the COVID-19 pandemic brought about numerous weaknesses and challenges of the healthcare system, as well as outstretching its workforce resources.
He observed that the pandemic presented a dilemma that was both fearful and disconcerting to members considering being frontline workers and the size of the population.
Habeeb, however, commended doctors for showing resilience in the face of uncertainties brought about by COVID-19, including loss of lives to infections, inadequate supply of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and issues bothering on salaries of members.
“Through the odds of the executive year, we have been able to ensure the modest milestone through constructive engagement both nationally and internationally.
He applauded efforts of members, saying that through constructive engagement with the government, about 100 resident doctors and medical officers across various departments were employed.
He also commended the reasonable supply of PPE at service points of the hospital, drilling of borehole and reticulation of water supply system, among other improvements.
Habeeb added that the association has ensured the speedy and full operation of the Isolation and Infectious Diseases Ward.
Speaking on the AGM, the ARD-UITH president noted that a consortium of doctors from its association were providing free medical services to more than 500 patients in Offa Local Government Area of Kwara.
“About 60 general and ophthalmology surgical cases will be performed at no cost to the patients,” he said.
He added that Scientific Conference of the AGM is themed: “Nigeria’s Health Sector Predicament and Onus of Medical Doctors in Politics”.