The Akwa Ibom Government says it has discharged 27 coronavirus (COVID-19) patients from the Ibom Specialist Hospital Isolation Centre, Uyo.
The state Commissioner for Health, Dr Dominic Ukpong, made the disclosure to newsmen in Uyo on Wednesday.
Ukpong said the 27 patients were the highest number discharged at once since the state recorded its index cases on April 1.
He said that only five patients were remaining in the isolation centre, adding that the five cases were old cases, who were going to be re-tested to verify if they were still positive.
Ukpong said that the discharged patients, who were in the isolation centre for 19 days, were in good health.
The commissioner added that their families had already been contacted and they were returning to safe environment.
He said that no health worker in the state had died of COVID-19, and encouraged them to always guard their health as they were the first responders in the treatment of the disease.
“Today is the day we’ve had the largest number of discharged cases. We discharged 27 people today, and that is very large for this state.
“What makes it significant is that we have not recorded any loss.
“They are all going out without symptoms. They have been with us now for 19 days under good management by our management team.
“Those people discharged today are going out in good health, and I want to mention that their houses and families have already been contacted. They are in self isolation, we will manage them too.
“So, they are returning to safe environment. We have talked to them as we are talking to any other person who has left here on discharge, that it is important to maintain personal hygiene,” Ukpong said.
The commissioner thanked God that the state had not recorded death of any health worker since the outbreak of the pandemic.
He said that the state had progressed in the care for coronavirus patients, adding that recently an ultramodern isolation centre was inaugurated and it had a PCR level 3 molecular laboratory.
“We have just been told that we have gotten the certificate from the NCDC that the laboratory has more than met the requirements.
“In fact, they say it is the best in Nigeria; others say it is the best in Africa today.
“It can test coronavirus and test other viruses, but beyond that, it can do RMA and DNA tests.
“That means it can actually merge cancer cells – cancer of the cervix, cancer of the breast. So it can tell whether you have it, so that you can commence treatment.
“It is a very comprehensive laboratory and that is why we say it is the best in Africa,” he said.
He urged residents to adhere to the NCDC protocol of personal hygiene, regular washing of hands with soap under running water, use of alcohol-based hand sanitiser and social distancing to stay safe.