In order to help us better understand and know everything about the coronavirus (COVID-19), Youth For Challenge made an interview with Doctor Richepin APLOGAN in the premises of the Departmental Directorate of Health of Mono.
YFC: Hello Doctor. Could you introduce yourself to our readers?
Dr. APLOGAN : Hello sir. I am Richepin APLOGAN, public health doctor. I am the Head of the Departmental Service of Public Health and Traditional Medicine for the Department of Mono.
YFC: Thank you for welcoming us to your premises at the Departmental Health Directorate of Mono. Can you explain to us the modes of transmission of the coronavirus?
Dr. APLOGAN : The coronavirus is transmitted by droplets emitted during coughing, sneezing or when speaking. When you are in the immediate environment, that is, within a meter of someone coughing or sneezing and emitting these droplets containing the virus into the environment, you risk inhaling them. with viruses of course. And that's how you're going to catch the disease. Apart from that, there is the indirect mode of transmission. Viruses can get deposited on things, the cuffs of doors, tables, walls, the floor, always when they are emitted by someone who is sick and who is coughing or sneezing. It will settle on the objects and persist for a while. So if someone does not observe the recommended hygiene measures, that is, regular washing of hands and the like, when they go to lay their hands on these objects and maybe bring them to his face, he will self-inoculate the germs. In this same process, when he has his hands dirty and he goes to greet someone else, that one too can
immediately catch the virus and spread it thereafter.
YFC: What are the major symptoms of COVID-19?
Dr. APLOGAN : Thank you for your question. COVID-19 is the disease caused by the novel coronavirus. The symptoms that allow it to be recognized are mainly fever, cough, cold, loss of taste, smell, dyspnea. At a more advanced stage when the disease worsens, symptoms of respiratory distress set in. At this level, care is only provided in approved structures where we have the capacity for respiratory resuscitation. These symptoms presented above are those of the flu but there are also new symptoms that have been found such as diarrhea that are not usually found in the flu symptom pack. This is a bit of how we can recognize someone who has the disease called COVID-19. In all cases, these symptoms do not necessarily mean it is COVID-19. As soon as you suspect yourself, you have to go to the test to have confirmation by laboratory samples and analyzes.
YFC: Are neem leaves, kinkeliba, hot water, garlic, ginger and our national whitewater "Sodabi" indicated to treat COVID-19?
Dr. APLOGAN : I do not deny the virtues of plants since we all recognize it: there are many drugs that are extracted from these plants. But to say that neem leaves, kinkeliba and the like treat the coronavirus is an exaggeration. We have not confirmed by analyzes to actually know what is the effectiveness of certain plants (already known for the treatment of many other diseases in our regions) in the treatment of the new coronavirus. Regarding the new coronavirus, I think we should not go too fast. Plants necessarily have virtues but we need to be able to put in place a strategy to study them before affirming it formally. When it comes to sodabi, it is a mistake to think that taking alcohol would cure someone who is sick with COVID-19.
YFC: What to do when you notice the symptoms presented above?
Dr. APLOGAN : When in doubt, that is, when someone has symptoms and it is not known if it is indeed an infection with the new coronavirus, the first thing to do is to avoid running towards the hospital. In each department and in each health zone, contacts are set up so that we can call the health actors to report the
problems we encounter so that a health team can be dispatched. Besides the green line 136, here are two other numbers that will be very useful in the Mono department: (+229) 97876863 – 66345321. At the very least, the health worker will be able to assess their symptoms to see if this is all part of the symptoms of COVID-19, and what needs to be done so that this person can be sampled and put on treatment. In short, if you have any doubts, you should call these numbers while staying at home and avoid coming into contact with many people so as not to contaminate them. In your own house, as soon as you have doubts, you have to isolate yourself by occupying, alone, your room or a vacant room while avoiding going out, going into contact with others, going to soil the material that everyone uses. It is therefore necessary to take precautions to inform by telephone or remotely the members of the entourage so that they know that if you avoid going in contact, it is just because you think you have a problem and that it is necessary wait until you have fixed it for everything to return to normal.
YFC: What protective measures are in order in this context of the new coronavirus pandemic?
Dr. APLOGAN : The first thing that is important to do is to wash your hands constantly with soap and water. I insist on the regularity of hand washing. It seems weird when you ask to wash your hands with soap and water at all times. As I leave my house after preparing myself, I touch the wrist of my door to open and close it. I can't tell if the wrist on my door is infected. Since I touched it, if there were any germs on it, I would have picked them up. So I have to get close to a washing device to wash my hands when I go outside so that my hands are clean before I engage in my activities.
Then, when I am at the service or go to a market or a supermarket to do my shopping, it inevitably happens that I touch objects or surfaces whose cleanliness I do not control. There are also people whom I meet and whom I am tempted to greet. You will see that since this pandemic, we have asked not to shake hands or hug. This is already to prevent transmission by direct contact. So I have to constantly wash my hands during my activities away from home. As soon as I return home, I will also touch the wrist of my door to enter my home. There is always this possibility of contamination. Let's summarize: in terms of barrier gestures, you must therefore wash your hands regularly, avoid direct contact, use a disposable hygienic tissue when you have to cough or sneeze or do it in the crease of the elbow. Sometimes you may not have access to a water source to wash your hands. Under these conditions, the hydroalcoholic gel must be used. Gloves can also be used to avoid transmitting germs to the hand. Here are some gestures that we can retain as barrier gestures to avoid the transmission of the new coronavirus.
YFC: Are masks important?
Dr. APLOGAN : Ah yes ! Masks are very important. As soon as I start to speak, it is natural that there are droplets of saliva escaping. If I am not wearing a mask and I am infected, these droplets will therefore settle in my environment. Masks are privileged means that also allow those who cough or sneeze to avoid emitting particles and other possible germs of the new coronavirus into the environment.
YFC: We are at the end of this interview. Do you have a message for the community?
Dr. APLOGAN : Obviously. In this time of pandemic, it is really recommended to stay at home when you have nothing urgent to do outside. This is already a way of avoiding exposure. And when you have to go out, you have to have your face mask on, wear it and not under your chin or in your hand, respect the protection and prevention measures that are widely broadcast on radio and television channels and on social networks. . It is for our good and for the good of our community. Thank you.
YFC: Thank you Doctor Richepin APLOGAN.
With you, we took stock of what to remember about COVID-19, its modes of transmission and major symptoms, the issue of treatment with plants and sodabi, and the recommended protection and prevention measures. So we insisted on what to know and ruled out some rumors. Congratulations to your entire team for the excellent work in monitoring and managing the new coronavirus that you carry out daily in the Mono department.
To know everything about the coronavirus in Benin it's this way and here
With the participation of Waris DEDO