The COVID-19 Central Working Committee of Health Professionals in Cross River State has called on the Presidential Task Force through the Federal Ministry of Health and the NCDC to investigate COVID-19 testing claims and results tendered so far in the state.
A press statement signed by the Chairman, Nigeria Medical Association Dr. Agam E. Ayuk and Secretary Dennis Ekpo, called on the government to hold all those responsible for compromising testing in the state responsible.
The Health Professionals are also demanding explanations on the whereabouts of over 25 samples collected, stressing that the NCDC records only showed eight (8) samples underwent PCR tests.
This, the group said was an unethical practice that has endangered the lives of health workers and more importantly, that of the populace.
The committee after a meeting claimed it reviewed the issues bordering on COVID-19 response in the State and came up with the confirmation of five (5) cases from the University of Calabar Teaching Hospital Calabar (UCTH).
The group said that the five (5) samples that were sent to the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control accredited molecular laboratory at Alex Ekwueme University Teaching Hospital, Abakaliki were delivered on Monday, June 29, 2020.
Following receipt of specimen collection kits from NCDC by UCTH on Sunday, June 28, 2020, the samples included two patients who were already on admission at the UCTH Isolation Centre, one patient who was billed for surgery and two Medical Doctors who had respiratory symptoms (both staff of UCTH).
The group, however, informed the people that COVID-19 is real and present in Cross River State. It advised the public to neither panic nor stigmatize COVID-19 patients but rather take responsibility and steps to protect the vulnerable and adhere to the NCDC protocols/guidelines of regular hand washing, social/physical distancing, and use of facemasks to protect themselves.