FMC: Doctors, Nurses suspend night duties to protest assault on colleagues, management vows to sue perpetrators

FMC: Doctors, Nurses suspend night duties to protest assault on colleagues, management vows to sue perpetrators

Doctors and Nurses at the Medical Centre, Idi-Aba Abeokuta have resolved to suspend night duties to protest the incessant physical assault on their colleagues by relatives of patients.

A notice to that effect was served the Management by the hospital’s branches of Association of Resident Doctors (ARD) and National Association of Nurses and Midwives (NANNM) on Wednesday 7th July, 2021 and the action was to last initial three days.

The step was in reaction to the alleged assault on a Medical Officer by relatives of a patient on the night of Tuesday 6th July, 2021.

According to their letters of protest, the unions argued that the male doctor in the course of duty was “battered by the patient relatives, sustaining injury to the frontal and temporal region of the head and barely escaped being lynched by whiskers”.

The latest attack, according to the unions was “one too many cases of physical assault in the last few months in the Centre”.

The Tuesday’s assault was perpetrated by the relatives of a 70 year old female patient diagnosed over two years ago for hypertension and diabetes and was admitted into this hospital on Friday 25th June, 2021 following her referral from a private hospital.

On presentation at the Accident and Emergency, her condition was poor with noticeable signs of breathlessness, loss of consciousness and acute kidney injury.

After showing signs of improvement at the Accident and Emergency department, she was subsequently transferred to the Female Medical ward for further medical attention.

However, on the night of 6th July, 2021, the patient suddenly developed congestion cardiac failure and passed on while efforts were being made to revive her. Before she passed on, she had consumed six giant cylinders of oxygen.

Infuriated by the news of the death of the patient, the relatives who were around the hospital ward threw caution into the winds and went straight for the patient’s Doctor and assaulted and inflicted serious injuries on him before he was rescued by his colleagues.

Reacting at an emergency management committee meeting, the acting Medical Director, Dr Fidelis Ojeblenu frowned at the latest assault incident, warning that the management would henceforth take drastic measures to deal with perpetrators of such barbaric and criminal activities.

He said the management had initiated moves for the arrest and prosecution of those behind the assault to serve as a deterrent to others.

A statement by the Head of Public Relations & Information, Segun Orisajo said the acting Medical Director urged relatives of patients to always exercise caution and refrain from the frequent attacks on the health care personnel anytime eventualities occur.

He said however that the management will continue to emphasize affective communication among the care givers to the patients and their relatives, noting that most of the assault cases have been traced to communication lapses.

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