by Christiana Gokyo, Jos
Plateau State Government says there is an increase in community testing for Covid-19 disease, which has thereby prompted the state to have put in place as many as 3 testing centres, namely, at NVRI Vom, Plateau State Specialist Hospital and Jos University Teaching Hospital (JUTH).
A statement signed by Commissioner for Information and Communications, Hon. Dan Majang, and issued to our correspondent in Jos recently shows that, 23,396 samples have been collected across the state and sent to the laboratory, out of which 21,015 results have been received. This makes Plateau State among the states with highest testing rate in the country.
“In fact, Plateau State is one of the few to have tested all its civil servants and continues to test other citizens,” Majang noted.
He said, the government is concerned about the situation and continues to work towards overcoming it, adding that, “Due to slow pace of processing samples, not all test results are released immediately; thereby resulting in backlogs.
“There are 2,301 results pending at the National Veterinary Research Institute Vom testing centre alone, due to high traffic. Whenever such backlogs are released, it accounts for the high figures recorded against the state by the NCDC, which might be misconstrued as daily figures.”
The commissioner noted also that, “Despite the fact that there is increase in awareness about the pandemic in the state, government has noted wide non-adherence and/or compliance to laid down protocols of wearing face-masks, social distancing and hand washing by many citizens.
“The state government calls on all its citizens to remain calm and strictly adhere to the protocols, as these numbers will subside after the samples awaiting test are exhausted, and the situation normalizes.
“It might interest the public to know that government spends humongous amounts of money to provide free medication and other forms of support for those infected with the disease.
“Regrettably, 25 deaths related to COVID-19 have been recorded in the state, which represents 1.2 percent fatality rate, a figure that is, by far, lower than other states that have recorded well over 2 percent,” Majang explained.
He however said, “Governor Simon Lalong is worried with the loss of lives and remains determined to ensure that no further casualty is recorded.
“Government hereby assures its citizens of utmost support and also urges them to continue to observe the COVID-19 protocols of hand washing with soap under running water, use of certified sanitizers, wearing of face-masks and maintaining social distancing,” he said.