With the easing of lockdown and opening of interstate borders which was imposed by the FG because of COVID-19 pandemic, the President of Nigerian Optometric Association (NOA) Dr. Ozy Okonokhua has urged optometrist across the Country to “be extra vigilant and be compliant with accompanying measures and guidelines of Covid-19 when interfacing and examining patients eyes.
The National President made this call over the weekend in Abuja while addressing a group of young eye doctors who interacted with him through Zoom Virtual Meeting monitored from Calabar, Capital City of Cross River State. According to him, the call is to ensure that the association do not lose “the health gains we have made so far, since the COVID-19 statistics of front line health workers are of considerable concerned.”
The President further urged her members in health care facilities, both private and public not to reject persons seeking eye check ups especially in emergencies saying “It is unethical not to attend to persons in distress”; while also urging citizens to go to eye clinics and Hospital with their face masks on them. This is the ensure that the burden of blindness and blinding disease conditions does not spike in this era of pandemic.
He said the association is partnering with the Federal Ministry of Health and NCDC through the relevant Unions in the Health sector to ensure optometrist across the country is captured in distribution of PPEs and Hazard Allowance.
Okonokhua noted that COVID-19 is not a death sentence and as such every patient should be treated fairly devoid of panic, fear and scare with 100% safety measures as most cases are asymptomatic. He warned against stigmatization of patients at clinics, hospital and health centres.
The Optometrist boss called on all state chapter chairmen to monitor and ensure eye physicians in healthcare facilities attend to every patients without panic and scare. He said: Part of this problems causes mental health in patients which goes along way to affect and worsen their health conditions.
Dr Okonokhua used the opportunity to call on State Governors to step up their intervention by having the safety of medical personnel’s including optometrist at heart always.