At least 25 staff of Gashua General Hospital in Yobe State are suspected to have contracted COVID-19 after treating patients, who exhibited symptoms of the virus.

Findings by SaharaReporters on Friday showed that despite the risk of spreading the disease to patients, sick hospital staff were still attending to patients without being tested by the Nigeria Center for Disease Control or isolated by the state government.

Staff of the hospital also lamented the unavailability of Personal Protective Equipment and lack of basic training to deal with COVID-19. 

"All the health workers in the general hospital including the Principal Medical Officer have not been given basic training on how to deal with COVID-19.

"They have never set their eyes on PPP, they have no idea how to even wear or remove them in line with global best practices," the source said.

When SaharaReporters reached out to Mamman Mohammed, Director of Press and Public Affairs to the Yobe State Government on Friday, he attributed the increased deaths to heat.

He said, "What is happening in Gashua is a case of intense heat. At this time of the year, we have cases of dehydration and intense heat, so this is basically the problem there but we also have isolation centres at the Federal Medical Center, Nguru, which is some few kilometres away from Gashua, so any case from there would be moved to Nguru.

"Preliminary report from the investigative medical team to Gashua indicate cases of intense heat and dehydration and not Coronavirus related."

Recall that on Wednesday SaharaReporters reported that no less than 155 persons had died in Gashua and Potiskum areas of Yobe State over the last six days after exhibiting Coronavirus symptoms.

More residents in Nguru told SaharaReporters that there was also an unprecedented number of deaths especially among old people, who suddenly found it difficult to breath, had fever and coughed.

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