Liberia: Former Defense Minister Brownie Samukai, A Survivor of COVID-19, Wants All Politicians to Turn Out for Testing
MONROVIA – Despite numerous challenges confronting health workers in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic in Liberia, former Defense Minister Brownie Samukai has termed as “exceptional and outstanding” healthcare delivery and services being rendered to Covid-19 patients by doctors and nurses assigned at the 14 Military Hospital in the country.
Located in Schefflein, Margibi County, the 14 Military Hospital is one of the treatment centers to setup by the Government of Liberia (GOL) to treat persons diagnosed of Coronavirus.
A few weeks ago, Mr. Samukai, who is a senatorial aspirant of Lofa County, was diagnosed of Covid-19 and treated at the hospital.
Speaking in an interview with FrontPageAfrica on Monday, July 20, Mr. Samukai disclosed that nurses and doctors normally had sleepless nights by consistently checking on patients and ensuring that the right treatments and others are accorded them
“I was received by two very professional persons who took me to my room. The people at the gate of the 14 Military Hospital were very professional. The doctors are outstanding; the nurses are very exceptional; they take care of you throughout the process”.
“Throughout the day and night, they are in the room making sure; checking on you and checking your temperature. They were giving everyone admitted in the room the same kind of preference to treatment including Liberians and foreigners. They go from room to room doing the same”.
Mr. Samukai added that food, water and other basic necessities where provided in a timely manner by the health workers without being requested by those who were diagnosed and treated along with him at the hospital.
“They had hygienists making sure about the kind of food you eating; making sure your room and bathroom was properly clean. They cleaned the room between three to four times a day. Some professional people were there. I was sick and needed care. These people provided me all of the support and I am very thankful to all of the doctors, nurses, the hygienists, therapists, cleaners and technicians. These people worked 24/7 in that white suit to take care of you”.
Mr. Samukai further urged Liberians doubting the existence of the virus to desist.
He noted that though there is low percentage of individuals that are severely affected from Coronavirus around the world, Liberians should do away from living in a state of denial and believe that the virus is in the country.
Mr. Samukai recalled that at the 14 Military Hospital, there were patients who had Covid-19 but look very healthy as compare to others who were sick, weak and tired at the facility.
He added that both patients that were critical, and others who were not, were shown care and concern by the health workers, including doctors and nurses.
“For the 12 days I was at the 14 Military Hospital, not a single person die. All of us admitted at the same time came out at the same time and we were very, very healthy”.
“The disease exists and I am evidence of that. The testing is slow, but in the end, the result will come. The decision of going to any of the treatment facilities is your best chance to survive. The more you stay outside, the more you will transfer the virus to someone else. If you get sick, get tested. These politicians and people who make noise on Facebook; if they get the guts-let they go and take the test”.Mr. Brownie Samukai, Former Minister of Defense
No specific treatment
Mr. Samukai further recalled that no specific treatment was provided by doctors and nurses to cure Covid-19 when he was admitted at the facility.
According to him, symptoms of the virus that appear on a patient were being treated immediately by the doctors and nurses.
“Coronavirus has no specific vaccine or cure. However, they work on the symptom that appears. When you start to cough, they give you something to boost your immune system or something for infections or oxygen if you don’t have sufficient oxygen. If it is headache or stomach, they will deal with it”.
Mr. Samukai, however, disclosed that multiple tests were done prior to his release from the hospital.
He added that though doctors and nurses are faced with logistical and human resource constraints, the 14 Military Hospital remains outstanding to seek medical treatment if one is diagnosed of the virus.
“Health workers are dedicated but they need all of the support. Let’s support their works”.
Go take your test
Meanwhile, the former Minister of National Defense has urged Liberians to continue to follow health protocols, including washing of hands frequently, social distancing, and wearing of face masks, among others.
He urged politicians to refrain from politicizing the outbreak of Covid-19 in Liberia and support the efforts of health workers by voluntarily turning out to take their test.
Mr. Samukai maintained that health workers at the facility are professional and caring, and as such, politicians should not panic over submitting themselves for testing.
“The disease exists and I am evidence of that. The testing is slow, but in the end, the result will come. The decision of going to any of the treatment facilities is your best chance to survive. The more you stay outside, the more you will transfer the virus to someone else. If you get sick, get tested. These politicians and people who make noise on Facebook; if they get the guts-let they go and take the test”.