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Lagos Doctors Declare Strike Over Death Of Colleague In Faulty Hospital Elevator

Doctors in Lagos State working in the three government hospitals on Lagos Island will begin an indefinite strike over the death of its colleague, Dr Vwaere Diaso.

The state branch of the Nigeria Medical Association which gave the directive on Wednesday, has decided to mourn for five days in the state.

It has also asked doctors in the other government-owned hospitals to scale down activities as a mark of respect for late Diaso.

The hospitals to embark on the indefinite strike are the General Hospital, Odan, Lagos; Lagos Island Maternity Hospital, Lagos, and the Massey Street Children’s Hospital, Lagos.

The association said Diaso died on Tuesday at the General Hospital, Odan, Lagos, after she was trapped in the elevator for more than 40 minutes before she was rescued, and there was no blood available to resuscitate her.

According to the state Chairman, Dr. Benjamin Olowojebutu, and Secretary, Ismail Ajibowo, on Wednesday “the NMA Lagos State received with rude shock the death of one of our members, Dr Vwaere Diaso, a medical house officer, whose death occurred as a result of injuries sustained when the elevator she was in crashed.

“This is heartbreaking, heart-wrenching, and quite unfortunate. We commiserate with her immediate family, her colleagues on the Island, the Medical Guild, and all body of doctors in Lagos State. The information we got was that she was trapped in the elevator for more than 40 minutes before she was rescued.

“We were also reliably informed that there was no blood available for resuscitation, and this has become a recurring issue as a result of the review made by the government on the previous policy on blood donation.

“To us, this was an avoidable death and it’s unfortunate that it was allowed to happen. We are pained and we are mourning. We are well aware that this same elevator has been a source of problem for many years during which several complaints have been made to all relevant agencies with no respite, the statement read in part.

The NMA has demanded an immediate and unbiased investigation into the circumstances surrounding the incident, and said all those found culpable in this matter, especially the General Manager of the Lagos State Infrastructure Management Agency, Ms Adenike Adekambi, should be brought to justice.

“We direct all our doctors in the three government hospitals on the Island (GH Lagos, LIMH, and MSCH) to commence indefinite strike action until the investigations are completed and justice served; we immediately direct our doctors in all the other government hospitals to scale down activities as a mark of respect for our dead colleague. Only emergency services should be rendered for the next five days.

“The government should as a matter of urgency commence the complete overhaul of the house officers’ quarters on the island; all other infrastructures in all our government hospitals that need repairs should be urgently attended to. The blood transfusion system in Lagos State needs immediate revamping for improved services.

“As a result of this sad incident, the State Officers Committee of the Nigerian Medical Association, Lagos State, has decided that the upcoming Annual General Meeting will be a low-key event as a mark of respect to our colleague. We appeal to our colleagues to remain calm as NMA Lagos State leadership is on top of the situation and will leave no stone unturned in ensuring that justice is not just served but seen to have been served,” the statement noted.

 

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Group hails IG as mother accused Hospital of stealing Placenta

The Inspector General of Police, (IG) Kayode Egbetokun has received praises for the prompt arrest of suspects accused of stealing the placenta of a new born baby in privated hospital located in Kwara State. The suspects were taken from Ilofa to Ilorin, the Kwara State capital on Thursday.
In a statement signed by NHRC’s official, Mr Taiwo Adeleye said the arrest of the suspects was an important step towards securing justice for the families of Mr Rotimi Williams whose wife accused health officials at a private hospital of stealing the placenta of her new born baby.
The Nigerian Human Rights Community, (NHRC),a coalition of 130 civil society groups spread across Nigeria on Thursday expressed delight at the arrest of the suspects by the police.
The group said it was aware of plots by some powerful individuals to clog the wheel of justice but was delighted that the IG has brought hope to the despairing family. It called for full investigation that would lead to the arrest and prosecution of all culprits.
Few days ago, Mrs Williams accused the management of Cottage hospital, Ilofa, Kwara State of failing to account for the placenta of her new born baby. In complaints lodged with the NHRC, Mrs Williams said a nurse, Mrs Alabi took the delivery, one nurse Adeloye cleaned up the baby while one Mrs Toyin, a ward attendant claimed she mistakenly threw away the placenta.
“In Nigerian agelong tradition, the placenta is linked to the spiritual and physical wellbeing of a new born baby. There is a customary and agelong way of burying placenta of which every medical staff is aware.The disappearance of a baby’s placenta is a source of eternal trauma for the parents and a prelude to impugn the future of the child based on timeless tradition and beliefs,” the NHRC said.
The Coalition said the placenta could be stolen for rituals, adding that stealing a placenta is like killing the child or using the child for ritual by other means The group said it would follow-up the case “day and night” to ensure justice is done. The NHRC said Mrs Toyin brought out the mother’s bags from the labour room but failed to take the placenta along.
The rights group said one Mrs Ayoni Awolusi in the course of the delivery, claimed she was to be on duty but was absent. The medical personnel expected to be on dury was Dr. Ajibola. NHRC said Mrs Williams put to bed around 7pm on Sunday May 12 but discovered the missing placenta very early on Monday 13th, May.
The group called on the IG to intensify the probe and ensure every one connected with the gory episode is brought to justice

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AstraZeneca withdraws COVID-19 vaccines from market as demand reduces

Anglo-Swedish drugmaker AstraZeneca on Wednesday said it was withdrawing Covid vaccine Vaxzevria, one of the first produced in the deadly pandemic, citing “commercial reasons” following a slump in demand.

“As multiple, variant Covid-19 vaccines have since been developed there is a surplus of available updated vaccines. This has led to a decline in demand for Vaxzevria, which is no longer being manufactured or supplied,” an AstraZeneca spokesperson added in a statement.

“We will now work with regulators and our partners to align on a clear path forward to conclude this chapter and significant contribution to the Covid-19 pandemic.”

AstraZeneca rapidly developed the successful Covid-19 jab during the coronavirus pandemic which erupted in the first half of 2020.

Vaxzevria, developed alongside Oxford University, was at first offered at cost but Astra decided in late 2021 to sell it for profit.

But the world pivoted towards mRNA vaccines, particularly the one produced by US drugs giant Pfizer and German peer BioNTech, after rare blood-clot problems with Astra’s jab increased public hesitancy about taking it.

Sales collapsed further as global Covid restrictions were fully lifted worldwide and the world emerged from the global health crisis.

The AstraZeneca spokesperson said the group had begun the process from taking it off the market in the Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMA) region.

The company will work with other regulators globally to start market authorisation withdrawals for the Vaxzevria “where no future commercial demand for the vaccine is expected”.

The spokesperson said that, according to independent estimates, “over 6.5 million lives were saved in the first year of use alone” and more than three billion doses were supplied globally.

“We are incredibly proud of the role Vaxzevria played in ending the global pandemic,” the spokesperson said.

“Our efforts have been recognised by governments around the world and are widely regarded as being a critical component of ending the global pandemic. ”

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NMA lauds Police for arresting fake doctor in Lagos

The Nigerian Medical Association, NMA, has commended the Nigerian Police Force for arresting an alleged fake medical doctor.

In an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria on Tuesday in Lagos, Dr Benjamin Olowojebutu, Chairman, NMA Lagos, said the arrest will strengthen the association’s fight against quackery in the medical profession.

Olowojebutu explained that medical quackery was a dangerous practice that posed a threat to the well-being of citizens and the delivery of quality healthcare in the state, and country.

“The arrest is a welcome development for the health sector; we would expose these quacks and ensure that Lagos does not suffer further morbidity and mortality from their nefarious activities.

“We are glad that our work on anti-quackery has started yielding progress as we are determined to weed out quacks from the medical profession,” he said.

The chairman pledged that NMA Lagos, with the support of the Ministry of Health, Health Monitoring and Accreditation Agency, HEFAMAA, and police, would eradicate quacks from the state.

According to him, the association would hold an anti-quackery summit soon, after which it would present a white paper to the Lagos State Government on anti-quackery.

Olowojebutu warned hospitals to refrain from employing staff whose certificates and licences had not been verified by the MDCN to safeguard the health of the populace.

The 37-year-old medical practitioner with suspected forged certificates was arrested by police at Skylink Medical Centre, Elepe-Ikorodu.

The police said they arrested the suspect, who claimed to be the managing director of the health facility, based on intelligence gathered by the command through members of the Elepe community concerning the activities of the suspect.

The police recovered two suspected forged certificates of the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Osun State and the Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria, MDCN, after searching for the facility.

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