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FG to sanction hospitals rejecting emergency patients

The Federal Government has threatened to go after the management of any hospital that refused to attend to patients rushed into their facilities in an emergency.

The Minister of Women Affairs, Uju Kennedy-Ohanenye, gave the warning at the ‘Unlock Grants Award’ ceremony in Abuja on Sunday.

In October 2023, the media was awash with the viral report of how a victim of a road traffic robbery popularly called ‘one chance’, Greatness Olorunfemi, died after being denied treatment when she was rushed to Maitama Hospital in Abuja.

A similar thing happened a few years ago when two gunshot victims were rejected at a Lagos hospital, leading to their eventual death.

The growing concerns compelled the House of Representatives earlier this year to task the Federal Ministry of Health to take decisive action against hospitals and healthcare facilities that refused to treat accident or gunshot patients without a police report.

But Kennedy-Ohanenye said the FG would no longer allow such incidents to go unpunished, saying hospitals have been directed to start putting out signposts reflecting ‘No more rejection of emergency patients’ outside their facilities.

The minister also revealed that a mobile court has been set up to start adjudicating on such cases.

She said, “Our hospitals will also put a sign of ‘No more rejection of emergency patients.’ These are some of the major issues we have in this country. I am in touch with Maitama Hospital. But now, I have a mobile court for any hospital that does that. I use this opportunity to call on all Nigerians to be vigilant.

“Let me also say that I am proud of Nigerians. I love the way they are using social media to tackle issues. But focus and continue to tackle the main issues as you are doing. Keep it up. But this is the time for action.

“Let all of us buckle up to prevent emergency patients from being rejected. I am still going to keep calling on Nigerians. This fight is not for one person alone. It is for all of us.”

Sourcepunch

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