KANO State is facing renewed threat of inadequate medical professionals to combat the growing coronavirus pandemic after it emerged that no less than 10 doctors at the Aminu Kano Teaching Hospital (AKTH) tested positive.
With the highest number of new cases in recent weeks, Kano State has 397 coronavirus cases, behind Lagos of which there have been 11 deaths. However, unlike Lagos State, Kano does not have the necessary infrastructure in the form of isolation centres, testing units, ventilators and an abundance of skilled personnel to deal with the problem.
A few weeks ago, the testing centre at the Aminu Kano Teaching Hospital had to shut because about half of the staff there were diagnosed as coronavirus positive. Although the centre has since re-opened following the deployment of a 16-man team there from Abuja, it is not operating at the same level as that of Lagos.
Dr Abukakar Nagona, the chairman of the Association of Resident Doctors at AKTH, said the affected doctors were treating patients, who came to the hospital with symptoms later discovered to be Covid-19. He attributed the vulnerability of the doctors to the absence of adequate personal protective equipment, as well as the failure of patients to wear face masks when coming to the hospital for treatment.
“Eight of the infected doctors have been sent to isolation centres, while the remaining two have gone into self-isolation in their respective homes, as they were yet to develop any symptoms,” Dr Nagona, said.