Lagos - Dr Tony Phillips, National President, Guild of Medical Directors, says that the doctors’ strike during the Ebola outbreak in 2014 helped to curtail its spread in Nigeria.
Phillips made the assertion during a visit on Wednesday to First Consultant Hospital, Obalende, Lagos, as part of the activities to mark the 25th National Annual General Meeting of the guild.
He said that the visit to the hospital was significant because of the role the hospital played in curtailing the spread of Ebola in the country.
The Guild of Medical Directors is a body of private medical practitioners.
The first Ebola patient in Nigeria, Patrick Sawyer, a Liberian, died at the hospital leading to the death of Dr Stella Adadevoh.
"Ebola is one disease that has kept the world on its toes, especially Nigeria and what Nigeria did with regards to curtailing its spread was significant.
"I have said it before that the doctors’ strike that time was divine and if not for the intervention of First Consultant Hospital, it would have been worse.
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"Ebola would have been all over the place because Patrick Sawyer wouldn’t have travelled all the way from airport to this hospital.
"What if he went to a general hospital like the Lagos State Teaching Hospital (LASUTH) and met with out-patients? It could have been a fatal spread.
"This hospital lost many of its staff and resources as a result of this incident and this necessitated the honour of visiting the hospital,’’ he said.
Phillips said that most Nigerians still entertained the fear of going to the hospital, but advised that the facility was safe for people as the government had certified it so.
He said the significance of the guild’s conference with the theme, "Combating Burden of Non-Communicable Diseases in Nigeria through Lifestyle Changes’’, was to help young doctors in the guild to grapple with the conditions.
"Every year, what the guild does is to inculcate a scientific conference and also to advise the young doctors as we deliberate on common ailments in the society and how to manage them.
"The theme was taken as a result of lifestyle changes. We have a lot of problems in the society; we have diabetes and hypertension, all these are becoming alarming.