As the figure of COVID-19 patients keeps rising, the federal government is considering the option of home-care treatment for the cases as some states are running out of bed spaces.
The Director-General of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, NCDC, Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu, made this known at the daily Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 briefing on Thursday.
Dr Ihekweazu said the country has about 3,500-bed spaces identified as available for COVID-19 patients.
He, however, said more bed spaces will be needed as the number of COVID-19 cases increases in the country
Concerning the availability of bed spaces for the management of patients, there is no doubt that we are struggling in certain places especially in Lagos State, and to an extent Kano and Abuja. But the biggest challenge right now is in Lagos where bed spaces are really tight.
Across the country, we have about 3,500-bed spaces identified as available for coronavirus but in Lagos, we are already struggling.
So, we are going to work with them to keep trying to make more spaces available.
As of April 30, a total of 1,728 persons have been confirmed to have COVID-19 in Nigeria. Although 307 persons have been successfully treated and discharged, 51 deaths have been recorded.
Nigeria’s COVID-19 cases have increased rapidly in the past week with the country recording its highest daily figure of 196 on Wednesday.
The NCDC boss said there are considerations of home treatment in certain circumstances.
But ultimately, we might have to change that strategy a little bit and start considering homecare in certain circumstances where – firstly you are able to provide a room where a patient can be managed sufficiently and secondly, we are able to support the care by enabling healthcare workers to come there.
We will always be honest with Nigerians. We are struggling at the moment and we might have to adapt our strategies because of the realities we face.
Over the next few days and weeks, and as we do that, we will make that clear to Nigerians.
Our policy hasn’t changed but the pressure is there and that might have to change in the next few days.