The Lagos State government has said it will not disclose the identity of an Italian national who tested positive to coronavirus disease (COVID-19), insisting it is against the ethics of medical practice to give out information about the identity of the patient.
Many Nigerians have been calling on government to disclose the identity of the Italian since he was announced as the first person with the virus in the country.
In a press parley with reporters at the Lagos Ministry of health on Wednesday, the Commissioner for health, Prof Akin Abayomi said the rules of engagement regarding patient-doctor confidentiality had compelled him not to disclose the name and other personal information of the Italian. He disclosed that the Italian man was responding to treatment, adding that a new treatment had commenced for the index case in the isolation ward at the Mainland hospital in Lagos.
In his explanation, Abayomi said: “We started a new treatment for him two days ago which he is responding fine to. He is comfortable but bored. At the moment, we are trying to make him comfortable because he is the only person in the isolation room with 14 beds, he has nothing to do all day long, nobody wants to come and visit him. We’ve made provisions for him to have wifi to connect to the outside world.”
“We are testing him everyday. What we are looking forward to is to see if there is still evidence of the virus in his secretion. The moment we stop seeing the footprint of the virus, then we wait for an extra two to three days to make sure he is okay. “Sometimes, when you clear the virus, there is an element of rebound before it goes away. If there is a rebound and we release him, there are chances of infecting people around him.”