The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation and the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board have donated ventilators to the University of Abuja Teaching Hospital for the management of the coronavirus pandemic.
Authorities at the hospital told PREMIUM TIMES the NNPC donated six brand new ventilators while JAMB donated two. Some of the donated ventilators are those used for ambulance transportation of patients while the remaining are for in-patient critical care.
According to data provided by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, Nigeria currently has 131 coronavirus cases, with about 25 of the cases being managed in Abuja.
“As far as ventilators are concerned, we are comfortable for now,” an official of the hospital told PREMIUM TIMES Tuesday. “We are grateful to the NNPC, JAMB and other organisations and individuals identifying with us at this time of need.”
Contacted on the management of the coronavirus cases by his hospital, Chief Medical Director, Bissallah Ekele, a professor, asked this reporter to direct his enquiries to the Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire.
”I am in a peculiar situation, I am here in Abuja, my minister is also here and he is the only one who can provide updates and details on our management of the coronavirus cases,” Mr Ekele said. “All I can say is that government has been responding to our needs and we are doing well.”
The shortage of ventilators in the country has been a source of concern for many Nigerians including lawmakers and public health experts.
A ventilator, a machine that pumps air in and out of the lungs, is needed to assist some coronavirus patients to breathe.
Coronavirus is a disease that affects the respiratory system, hence the number of hospitalised patients that would need breathing assistance is likely to also increase if the ailment spikes in Nigeria.
This has been evident in other countries where the aliments are being treated.
However, Mr Ehanire said on Monday that most of the cases handled so far in the country have been mild and as such the country might not need too many respirators to manage patients.