Two-hundred-and-ten Nigerian health workers, including 10 medical doctors, have been killed by the COVID – 19 disease, a medical expert, Dr. Abubakar Danladi, has said.
Danladi, a Chief Consultant Obstetrician and Gynaecologist, spoke in Kaduna at the inaugural session of Chartered Institute of Health Economists,USA, and Conferment of Fellowship Awards.
He further disclosed that over 10,000 health workers across Africa have tested positive for COVID-19.
According to him, the pandemic coupled with lockdown, reduction in the country’s income and health allocation, may lead to an increase in maternal and newborn mortality by 31 per cent in Nigeria.
He said, “COVID-19 has potential to increase maternal and newborn mortality by one third (31 per cent) based on historical antecedent and Ebola experience.
“This is because over 10,000 health workers tested positive for COVID-19 across Africa. 812 tested positive in Nigeria out of which 200 Nigerian health workers and 10 Nigerian doctors have so far been killed by the disease.”
Continuing, Danladi said, “We applied the same relative reduction in family planning use, antenatal care visit and facility-based delivery seen during the Ebola epidemic to estimate the indirect impact of the COVID-19 on maternal and newborn health in India, Indonesia, Nigeria and Pakistan over the next 12 months using Live Saved Tool.
“The four countries are the most populous low and middle-income countries in the world accounting for almost one-third of the world’s population and continuously struggle with poor maternal and newborn health outcomes.
“Significant increase in maternal and newborn death and stillbirth would occur across these four countries over the next year if health service declined compared to what we would see if these countries maintained current use of maternal and reproductive health services.
“We could see as many as 31,980 maternal death, 395,440 additional newborn death and 338,760 additional stillbirths. That is a total of 766,180 additional deaths across these four countries alone and corresponds to 31 per cent increase in mortality.”
Noting that Nigeria’s Modern Method of Contraceptives Prevalence is currently 12 per cent, he said the pandemic was threatening the country’s plan to increase the prevalence to 27 per cent.
Increasing the prevalence to 27 per cent will avert 8,250 unwanted abortions, 1.5 million pregnancies, save 90,000 lives and decrease maternal and infant mortality by 33 per cent and 44 per cent, respectively, and decrease complications of pregnancy and delivery.
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