The Joint Health Sector Union (JOHESU), University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital, has disclosed that no fewer than 18 nurses have tested positive for COVID-19 at the hospital, adding that seven supporting staff (portals) have also tested positive for the virus.
The union lamented that UITH is yet to have a COVID-19 isolation centre, commending the management for converting one of the wards at the hospital to an isolation centre.
UITH JOHESU Chairman Olutunde Oluwawumi spoke to reporters in Ilorin, the state capital, on the side lines of a meeting with members.
Corroborated by some of the nurses working at the centre, Comrade Oluwawumi said that many of the nurses working at the centre are not properly kitted.
He said: “Presently, we have about 18 nurses that had tested positive to the pandemic and seven sub-staff. We want better protection, adequate personal protective equipment (PPEs). What we are due for should be given to us. We are lacking in a number of things, including exposing our lives to danger. It is now that they are trying to rectify the issue of PPE. PPEs have not been given. They are just promising us.
“We have a ward converted to isolation centre at the UITH. We have not got our own isolation centre. Government ought to have built one for us. Based on the increase in the number of patients testing positive to the COVID-19 pandemic, we had to take them in here and nurse them.
“Our agitation is that the ward that has been converted to COVID-19 should be properly adjusted to suit the purpose in order not to infect people who are working there.
“People who are working at the centre are not being properly taken care of. Many of them did not sign to work at the isolation centre. They are abandoned in protecting them. We have 22 nurses working at the centre, six cleaners and six porters.”