As the nation grapples with COVID-19 which has become a global health emergency, Kaduna State Government has strengthened its surveillance on the disease through a capacity building for it Rapid Response Team (RRT) in Sanga, a local government that share a border with Nasarawa and Plateau states.
According to a facilitator of the training, Mr Ibrahim Adamu, who is the World Health Organization (WHO) LGA facilitator for Sanga and Kaura LGAs, said: “Sanga LGA is crucial in Kaduna State’s surveillance on the disease because it is one of the entry points to the State.”
“Sanga LGA is bounded by Nasarawa and Plateau States, and is a gateway to most parts of the North,” the WHO facilitator said adding that the training is taking place in all the 23 local government areas of Kaduna State.
Declaring the training open at the Chamber of the Local government Secretariat, the Director of the Primary Health Care Department in Sanga LGA, Martha G. Nom, stated that the training is a follow-up to earlier trainings in order to boost the capacity of the Rapid Response Team and other stakeholders in the area of surveillance.
Giving an overview of Covid-19, the facilitator describes it as “an infectious disease caused by a newly discovered coronavirus which started in Wuhan, China in 2019.” He added that “the disease has no vaccine at the moment. So, the best way to prevent and slow down transmission is to be well informed about the COVID-19 virus: how the disease it caused and how it spreads. Protect yourself and others from infection by washing your hands or using an alcohol based hand sanitizer frequently.” He went on to stress that, “principally, prevention of the disease has to do with respiratory hygiene, hand hygiene and social distancing.”
Noting that surveillance is a key pillar that the state is using to prevent the spread of covid-19, the facilitator outlined in detail the procedures involved in contact tracing, introduction to surveillance tools, COVID-19 Rumour Form, Case Investigation and contact investigation protocol forms which will be used in the COVID-19 surveillance in the LGA.
While intimating the LGA Rapid Response Team of the other pillars in the fight against the disease, a co-facilitator, Francisca B. Shamang, Kaduna State Assistant Disease Surveillance/Notification Officer listed the other pillars as: coordination, which is done at the state level; case management, risk communication, laboratory, research, entry point, infection prevention and control [IPC], logistic, and finance and administration.
Sanga Local Government Council Chairman who was at the training as host, applauded the State Government and the Coordinator of the State Covid-19 Task Force, Dr. Hadiza S. Balarabe [Deputy Governor] for the great work and sacrifice the State is making for the good of all people resident in the State. In view of that, and looking at the great threat that this disease poses to humanity, Danladi calls on all relevant stakeholders and the people of the local Government to be responsible in taking all preventive measures to curtail the spread of the disease.
Hon. Danladi also stated that, “I will want all our people to note that the window periods have now been reviewed to Wednesdays and Saturdays from 7am to 2pm. As a result, everyone is expected to comply to avoid being caught up by the law. Also, road users from outside the local government should take note so that they don’t blame anyone if anytime they come and they are denied access.” He also calls on all communities to watch out and report anyone coming into their communities from States that have high rate of outbreak to their community heads or the nearest health facility.
Those participating at the 2-day training are health workers such as Ward Focal Persons [WFP], Security agents, Religious and Traditional leaders, and other selected health workers.