Quack doctors , callous nurses, and inept medical administrative staffs are killing thousands of people on a daily bases in our various Nigerian hospitals (FMC) due to failures, basic errors and neglect of patient’s security with absolute legal impunity even in the case of preventable loss of lives.
The Federal medical centre located in the capital city of Asaba in the delta state Nigeria , On a sprawling sign board the FMC could be seen occupying massive hectares of land through the Nnebisi Road and the hospital Road on the west end of the city. The FMC Asaba has been approved officially for five departments of the hospital and it is the main provider of a tertiary level care. As a major tertiary institution, it is expected to provide sophisticated and intensive specialized services that include general medicine, paediatrics, obstetrics, gynaecology, various branches of surgery , psychiatry and emergency medicals.
But,despite these qualifications our investigations in various FMCs in Nigeria , paradoxically displays, a theatre of mass extermination of innocent lives. In compairism to normal tertiary institutions elsewhere in the world the FMCs in Nigeria are mere dispensaries or in a more critical perspective they are dungeons of deathWhen Evangelist Andrew Ajufo, 50 years old of the mountain of fire church in Asaba rushed his mom 85 years old to the FMC Asaba after she tripped off the bathroom door and fell down, it never occurred to him, she was breathing the last essence of life he could experience with his mum cause the hospital never revived her. His mother, Madame mercy Ajufo, 85, died 10 days later and lots of money paid to FMC in Asaba without the necessary comprehensive care to save her life. « am angry that my mum came to this hospital still breathing and alive and am aware that her death was preventable if she was given the emergency care she needed instead they kept us waiting invain for endless hours » Mr Ajufo said « it is regrettable that those dedicated to saving lives can be so careless and heartless with human lives, my mum’s death was a case of medical neglect » according to Mr Ajufo, doctors in this hospital along with the nurses have constantly demonstrated an attitude carelessness « they are heartless i dont know why they are in this business but dont show any sign of compassion they display such a level of callousness that makes me wonder» « They left my mum on drips for days and she was never fed and no provision to get her fully nourished » « This team of quacks cared nothing as if her life was meaning less and all the while their priority was totake as much money as possible my family left over 200,000 thousand expended in less than ten days and yet she died » he said ;
Barely 7 days after this tragedy, another member of the family died almost in thesame condition in that FTC Asaba hospital under questionable circumstances
Awele Ajufo ,32 years old accounting assistant in the ministry of works and a grand daugther to the said Mercy Ajufo, got admitted a few days after her grandma into the Hospital She was being admitted for a case diagonised as peptic ulcer « we were told the ulcer had eaten too deep into her intestine for more than one year therefore she needed a constant blood transfusion so we kept buying blood trying our best to keep her alife to avoid another tragedy as we will be burying two members of our family in thesame month … we went through obstacles, endless struggles walking long distances from one ward to another along with all the anguish, bottlenecks and disappointments to get the required service and with many more hundreds of thounsands expended only to be told by some rude nurses … « she passed away ».. "It's just too hard to accept that we have lost two people in this hospital in less than one month this young lady walked to the hospital on her feet and had to leave it through the mortuary » said Andrew
The controversies surrounding the death of Awele makes the case of a gross medical error. Awele died of hiv positive after she was diagonised and treated for septic ulcer, information given barely a week before her death. Another tragedy struck the same family in another medical centre in Lagos Joshua Ajufo, who just turned 14 years old, has been undergoing treatments for meningitis was discharged whereas he was not fully cured and died just five days after he was discharged at him.In less than three months, three members of the same family have died in the hands of Nigerian doctors, in spite of the fact that massive sums of money 1.5 million have been expended for services and drugs
Neither the doctors involved nor the spokesman for the FMC Asaba responded immediately to a request for comments
Awele’s case is only one of such numerous medical errors amongst our federal medical centre established nationwide . There are total of 22 FMC establishments across Nigeria with the same statistical medical blunders and untold stories of irresponsible negligence and unspeakable number of deaths Nigerian patients are massively dying in our hospital across the states and it is the most neglected medical tragedies in human history. Mr Andrew Ajufo recalls the story of Mr Daniel Nwosu whose wife drove herself to the hospital for a routine prenatal checkup the baby was overdue, her husband was at work , the doctor decided the baby needed to be delivered immediately, the lady was wheeled to the delivery room, but the doctor’s caesarean section sets off a bleeding that the surgeon could not put under control. After Two units of blood had been transfused to the young lady she died the next morning. The number of women who die in child birth related complications is horrendously high
According to a research study July 2015 into the hospital deaths almost 100000 patients are dying needlessly every year dew of basic errors by medical staff. This is worse than a car accident statistic « in fact it's like being in a permanent state war » . Nigeria is occupying the 187th position out of 191 the countries in the 2015 WHO ranking of the health care system. Technically speaking, there is no recognizable tertiary health care institution in Nigeria it has the most deplorable health care facilities in the world with substandard health care system and substandard medical staffs substandard services. The hospital is usually stretched beyond their limits along with doctors and medical staffs compelled to work in dire conditions, then there is the crippling shortage of medical facilities and lack of qualified staffs « its scary to fall sick here in Nigeria » said one visitor to the hospital who happened to be visiting his family and lately arrived from London. As Doctor Professor Omoruyi dejectedly remarked « its a pity this country has no health care system »
The stories of so many people’s experiences with Nigerian tertiary health care are so similar and fundamentally heartbreaking like the story of this young lady who was admitted in Lagos university teaching hospital in a « critical condition following infection from the caesarean operation performed in another hospital » after a supposed treatment the patient was due for discharge but could not meet up with the bill of 1.5million. The patient paid 300,000 thousand as the husband requested to pay the leftover fruit installemental payments of 15,000. The hospital required a guarantor while detaining the lady without further treatment « however the condition of Mrs Odudoye suddenly became poor and she died of pulmonic » declared the acting chief medical director, Chris Bode
The empirical evidence is clearly a tragic case of negligence. The deceased was in theory discharged, but never released, she was not only detained in the hospital as she could not honour her bills she was equally abandoned without care until she died. In another hospital a child just died for want of blood his parents could not pay. One distraught and traumatized Nigerian had this to say « doctors and the entire medical staff are heartlessly wrecking havoc with human lives here in Nigeria and all of the time with absolute impunity ….. Nobody challenges them, nobody controls them. The government and our leaders are careless about this persistent decay and the resulting death toll in our hospitals … yes, we accept the fact of a persistent crippling shortage of health care facilities and infrastructure, i ve heard of patients lying on the floor or doctors performing surgical operations with torch light ; we accept the fact also of an upsetting and acute deficiency of manpower …. But our doctors today seem to have lost sight of the ethics of their profession and the attitudes of nurses and health care staff is so despicable. They display such a level of rudeness and contempt and neglect that begs ² the question why the people in the business of saving lives behave so much like brutes and imposing a disrespectful behaviour on their patients. Medical mismagements and negligence causing death of women and babies in FMCs has become so rampant that families are mastering the means to sue the federal government and the health care institutions.
According to a premium time investigation : on the process of a treatment of a patient suffering from gall stone, a surgeon from the FMC Abuja puncture the lungs of her patient which resulted in bigger complication and she was left with blood clots on the lungs. A treatment that was expected to last 4 days lasts over 6 months until the patient died now the family is suing the hospital for 500million. « Litigation may be cumbersome, especially in a corrupt justice system, but if a hospital has more than… say 150 law suites with people seeking huge amount of money as damages for medical mismanagement ; preventable losses in our hospitals will stop, as no one is held accountable life has become meaningless to the entire medical staffs who persistently maintain a strategic irresponsibility before the victims of negligence »
The bottom line is that more victims should speak out, proper solution and be proactive to address these health care challenges we face in Nigeria