Patients recounts ordeal
… as doctors’ warning strike enters day 3
The 5-day warning strike declared by the National Association of Resident Doctors (NAD) entered its third day today as patients continue to lament about the deterioration of their conditions following the absence of the doctors.
Some consultant and nurses are however holding fort in many of the hospitals though services have slowed down considerably as the resident doctors stay off duty. When NHO visited the National Orthopaedic Hospital, Igbobi, Lagos yesterday, the general outpatient department was a devoid of its usual busy activities. There were no doctors around to attend to new patients. Only nurses were seen at the wards offering some treatments.
An accident patient who pleaded anonymity confirmed that a nurse was around earlier to attend to him, adding however that there was no usual ward round as both the resident doctors and consultants did not show up for work.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) also reported a lull in the activities at the Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH), Idi-Araba, Lagos, today as reporters observed that only few consultants, nurses, pharmacists, laboratory technicians and cleaners were at their duty posts.
Those patients that spoke to NAN appealed to both the Federal Government and the doctors to call off the strike in the interests of the public.
One of them, Mrs Bukola Adewole, told NAN that the strike was taking its toll on the stranded patients, and was also worsening their conditions. She urged the health workers to do all within them to end the strike and avoid future recurrence in the interest of the patients.
“Strike in health institutions should by all means be avoided because it is very dangerous and involves the lives of the people.
“We want the government to always ensure that doctors’ demands are met in order to avoid future strikes.
“It is sad that strike is gradually becoming a frequent trend in our teaching hospitals, “she said.
Another patient, Mr Joseph Okafor, appealed to the striking doctors and the Federal Government to reach an agreement that would put a stop to the recurring menace in the nation’s teaching hospitals.
“Majority of Nigerians cannot afford the cost of services being rendered by private hospitals and our only hope is the government hospital.
“But on getting here, we hear the resident doctors are on strike. The consultants alone cannot attend to us all.
“We are pleading to the doctors and government to reach an agreement that will end the strike for patients to get the necessary attention and treatments,’’ he said.
Also, Mrs Aminat Sule regretted that she had not been able to see her doctor since the previous day because of long queues of patients waiting to be attended to by the few consultants that were available.
“I am here again today and I hope there will be a doctor to attend to me. My appointment was yesterday but the crowd was too much due to the strike on ground,’’ she said.