May 3, 2020
By Abdallah el-Kurebe
As a science journalist and following the outbreak of Novel Coronavirus, I always took precautionary measures to ensure I did not contract the dreaded disease.
Publisher, Newsdiaryonline, Mr. Danlami Nmodu, would always call me, almost every day, to advise me to be cautious and observe all protocols.
“Editor, be careful ooo. Follow all protocols. Please, don’t stress yourself. Avoid overcrowded places,” he would warn.
I was also conscious that it was possible to have contact with those who were positive, but never went for test to know they were.
I observed all protocols, as instructed by my publisher who called every day to warn me against breaching them.
I remember one of the cases who found comfort in mingling with journalists at any event. He will always be with us at an assignment. He later tested positive and died.
At one of the Covid-19 press briefings by the Health Commissioner, who is also the Chairman, Sokoto State Taskforce on COVID-19, I raised colleagues’ consciousness of the need to voluntarily go for test.
The following day, a colleague was reported to have been rushed to the hospital but died two days after. But because his sample had been taken at the hospital, the result was positive after he had died.
Even though I still don’t have any symptom, I felt a stronger need not to wait a day longer but rush to get tested. And on Friday, May 1st, I drove myself to the Centre where my sample was taken.
On Sunday afternoon, I got a call from a Doctor at one of the isolation centres that I had tested positive.
“So, there is the need for either our vehicle comes to your house to convey you or drive yourself to the isolation centre.
“Come with anything you want to have pleasure with so that we commence treatment,” the Doctor said.
I parked everything I needed, including my computer and my wife drove me to the isolation centre, where I started receiving my medication.
While I strongly believe that contracting COVID-19 is not a death sentence, I strongly advise colleagues to volunteer to get tested.
Importantly, when one of the Doctors came to take my temperature, he said, “the purpose of isolation is to curtail spread while you take your drugs to get healed. Isolation does not mean seriousness of the infection. You only get isolated to rest and take drugs.”
Abdallah el-Kurebe, Editor, Newsdiaryonline writes from Isolation Centre in Sokoto