The Secretary to the Government of the Federation and Chairman of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19, Boss Mustapha on Tuesday attributed the growing COVID-19 fatalities in the country to self-medication.
Mustapha at the daily PTF media briefing in Abuja, said many of those who died recently, apart from having some underlying illnesses, had embarked on some form of self-medication or home care.
He advised those infected by the virus to seek help rather than going underground.
He said: “For those who are struggling with the disease, help is available. Do not go underground. It is important to talk about it and to seek help. Every effort spares humanity the agony of the spread of the virus.”
The Minister of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire, who confirmed the Secretary to the Government of the Federation’s assertions, added that many recent cases of fatalities were as a result of the patients’ preference for home care rather than accessing official treatment.
He said: “It is of great importance that we, members of the health sector and citizens, endeavor to use this period to dedicate their effort to strive for the best, but also prepare for the worst.
“As we learn more about coronavirus every day, we must be ready to adjust our strategy, based on knowledge and evidence.
“1, 644 patients have been treated and discharged from care, but we have sadly recorded 191 deaths in 26 states and the FCT. Even though this figure seems low compared to other countries, a disturbing picture emerging from statistics is that not only are most fatalities observed to be linked with preexisting diseases, many are educated, well-to-do people, who chose home-based care, where they developed sudden complication and have to be rushed to hospital.
“Experience is showing that breathing complications in COVID-19 cases can arise with little or no notice. This is an added reason why all persons should seek medical attention when they test positive.”