Why Patients Suffer Medical Negligence in Nigeria

ON daily basis, very many promising Nigerians suffer medical negligence and effects of substandard medical practice. Many die and many more who survive, live with various morbidity to tell their stories.

On Sunday, March 4, 2018, Busola Odedina, 49, passed away in a Nigerian hospital under circumstances family members say, “shouldn’t have caused her death”.

According to a statement signed by Busola’s son, Kunle Odedina, “Busola didn’t survive a mere routine procedure. It borders on quality of our medical personnel and the advancement in modern health care delivery system they have been exposed to”.

It’s been a year that Busola exited and the family will gather on Monday, March 4 to honour her memory with the launch of a health website.

For the Odedinas and the Ajayis, “To die is not really a problem, since we all as mortals have signed up for it as a part of the living experience. What is most painful however is avoidable death and Nigeria is replete with deaths that are avoidable to the point where the country is almost like a coffin of human carcass from our dysfunctional health management system which manifests itself in different forms.

Late Busola Odedina

Some of the reasons why Nigerians suffer effects of medical negligence as identified by Kunle include: Carelessness of our caregivers, Inadequate experience of Medical Personnel, badly run health institutions and Lack of information on the part of patients as to the nature of their ailments

According to Busola’s family, since the development of a nation is measured by a global tool known as the human development index (HDI), a statistic composite index of life expectancy, education, health and per capita income indicators, no nation can be truly great when its citizens lack basic healthcare system.

With the demise of Busola, the family thinks it is very necessary to offer a platform that will take over the burden of medical information to everyone who cares to have second opinion to their medical conditions.

According to Kunle, “Therefore, as part of activities to mark the first memorial anniversary of her passing, the family decided to launch Nigeriaehealth.or.ng as an online platform for relevant information and advice on health-related issues.

“The essence of this is to provide avenue for second opinion on various medical issues in order to properly guide citizens to make the right choices and reduce patients’ deaths from medical negligence.

“The website is designed to offer the opportunity of second guessing our healthcare system in such a way that we can help to save lives in the long run”.

The website Nigeriaehealth.org.ng will be launched on Monday, March 4 to coincide with the first anniversary of Busola’s passage at the  Kudos Hall, 86, Adeniyi Jones Avenue, Ikeja, Lagos, (beside Ecobank), at 4.30 pm.

A keynote presentation on the topic; Nigerian Medical Health System: Current Challenges will be delivered by Consultant Obstetrician & Gynecologist, Dr Rotimi Adewoye.

  • According to the statement by Kunle Odedina, The Nigeriaehealth.org.ng is established to:
  • Provide a forum for Nigerians to obtain and appraise a second opinion on any medical condition.
  • Provide a forum for Nigerians to share their medical experiences (whether good or bad) to help others.
  • Point Nigerians to the right quarters where necessary to receive medical treatments.
  • Assist the government by sharing views of Nigerians as well as glaring problems.
  • Create pages on some common ailments and how to manage them.
  • Assist Nigerians in accessing national and international health checks.
  • Invite qualified doctors to provide information on preventative care as well as different approaches to treatments.
  • Call out hospitals with several malpractices.
  • Work for improved regulation and more stringent code of conduct for Nigerian medical practitioners.

However, the Nigeriaehealth.org.ng is not a hospital or clinic; it is not a business venture; it is non-partisan and it is not anti-government explains, Kunle Odedina.

 

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