JOHESU STRIKE: High Death Rate Imminent In FMC Asaba As Union Raises Alarm


HardReporters has learnt that there are strong indications of possible high death rate at the the Federal Medical Center (FMC), Asaba, following management alleged deployment of inexperienced laboratory and pharmacy trainees and corps members to provide services to unsuspecting members of the public while using sheet of papers for patients in place of hospital cards.

Members of the Joint Health Sector Union (JOHESU) in Federal Government hospitals had embarked on indefinite strike and as a show of solidarity the members of the union in state and local government areas had joined the strike.

Against this backdrop, the Federal Medical Center (FMC), Asaba branch of JOHESU has raised the alarm of possible high death rate in the hospital following the services said to be rendering by
the inexperienced laboratory and pharmacy trainees and corps members said to have been deployed by the FMC management.

Raising the alarm during a press briefing, chairman of JOHESU, FMC Asaba branch, Davidson Akinlays represented by the secretary, Christopher Ikperhe and the Chairman of Association of Medical Laboratory Scientists of Nigeria (AMSLN), FMC, Asaba Chapter, Anthony Iyasele, bemoaned the use of what they referred to as interns and corps members to run the hospital, adding that anybody going to the hospital for any form of treatment was taking a risk as the Heads of Department (HODs) and management are administrative staffs and does not have the time to supervise interns.

“It is unsafe to visit the hospital now that we are on strike because patients might receive half or low quality treatment which is inimical to their health. We have told management that using inexperienced persons is wrong”, adding that the interns and corps members were forced to be attending to patients in the name of skeletal services without adequate supervision., the union lamented.

According to the union, drugs giving to patients cannot be guaranteed as the usual practice known as pharmaco-vigilance-whereby a pharmacy on duty, working in synergy with the doctor on duty, can detect wrong prescription, is absent, saying that the implication is exposure to wrong dosage and possible death.

They also revealed that interns in the Laboratory cannot effectively carry out test and examinations and come up with right results, without good supervision, stressing that FMC, Asaba is a tertiary health facility where you cannot use trainees to conduct test, dispense doctor’s prescription and administer injection.

While condemning the development in the hospital and possible death toll, JOHESU advised management to stop the practice for the sake of the lives of members of the public.

Reacting to the alarm of high death rate raised by the unions, the Medical Director of FMC, Asaba, Victor Osiatuma, disclosed that medical doctors, management, members of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) and interns were not on strike, stressing that it is not possible that the interns were working without supervision.

Mr. Osiatuma however noted that contrary to submission of JOHESU, all the Heads of Department (HODs) are on duty and supervising the interns.


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