COVID-19: Lagos to build second oxygen plant amid spike in oxygen demand
The Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu has said that the demand for oxygen by coronavirus patients has increased to 400 cylinders per day noting that a second plant will come on stream within seven days to tackle the surge.
Governor Sanwo-Olu in a statement on Sunday reiterated that oxygen was free in all Lagos State-owned COVID-19 treatment centers adding that the government was making efforts to transform the state-owned isolation center in Gbagada into a fee-paying facility that people could elect to be treated at.
“Considering that oxygen demand has spiked to between 300 and 400 cylinders per day across state-owned treatment facilities, the government is working hard to ensure availability.
“To this end, a second oxygen plant is under construction at the Gbagada General Hospital and will come on-stream within the next seven days.
“It is expected that this will boost the in-house capacity and availability of oxygen across all state government-managed treatment centers,” the governor said.
He said that the decision was due to the growing clamour by patients and families who were willing to pay for COVID-19 treatment, but would like to do so at a cost that was lower than what was currently obtainable at private facilities.
“This means that the COVID treatment facility in Yaba will continue to offer free and high-quality treatment to all persons.
“Gbagada centre will offer treatment at a moderated and affordable cost to those who wish to take advantage of extra offerings like private treatment rooms and more personalized levels of care,” Sanwo-Olu said.
He said that the government established a telemedicine service, EKOTELEMED, for patients who were either asymptomatic or had mild symptoms that did not require admission and could, therefore, be managed in the comfort of their homes.
The governor said that EKOTELEMED was manned by well-trained medical personnel and available on a toll-free line, 08000EKOMED (08000356633).
He encouraged as many people as possible, whose cases fell in the asymptomatic or mild category, to take advantage of the EKOTELEMED service.
Sanwo-Olu said that so far about 5,000 patients had been reached through EKOTELEMED and more than a thousand care packs delivered to patients in the Home-based care programme.