EXCLUSIVE: PATIENTS ACCUSE EKITI HEALTH WORKERS OF EXTORTION, UNWHOLESOME PRACTICES.
WE DON’T HAVE ENOUGH PROTECTIVE MATERIALS…..HEALTH WORKERS.
Some patients at different health facilities in Ekiti State have accused the health officials of extortion and engagement in unwholesome practices inimical to their health.
The patients who spoke with Roundoffnews at different fora alleged that health workers often request for money to procure glove and mask before attending to them either on sick bed or during vaccination of their children.
The people also claimed that sometimes the nurses would ask them to buy a pack of glove just to examine them and the moment its time for another health official to attend to them they would have to buy another pack again.
According to the people, despite the extortion, the health officials would still go ahead to use a glove for several people, an action that is very unhealthy and dangerous to their health as such style could even promote the spread of virus.
Narrating her ordeal on the social media, a grandmother explained how some health officials were collecting hundred naira from mothers for glove before vaccinating their children and were also using a glove for four children.
According to her, the extortion took place at a basic health centre at the Federal Housing Ado-Ekiti, Ekiti state when she took her second daughter to the facility for vaccination.
She wrote on her wall “I had no issues getting her vaccinated here 6wks ago when she was born, obviously the menace of COVID was not that pronounced. The COVID cases are increasing by the day and one is now better informed, so I instructed her mum to pls carefully observe if the nurses dispose hand gloves after vaccinating each child.
“Lo and behold they don’t, they use one for 3 to 4 children😲. Being a nurse herself she asked why, they said they don’t have enough and she asked so why are you taking #100 naira for gloves you don’t provide. Trust the usual Nigeria civil service pattern of trying to intimidate anyone who raises an eyebrow to any misconduct.
“The guy tries to shout her down and say they were given on 10 gloves by the permanent secretary that they don’t have enough. Having stood in the sun for a while with the baby observing social distancing, she had not strenght to argue so she comes to the car and told me what the matter was.
“I walked up to the man, pulled him to the side and ask him why they are taking money and not providing gloves, he leaves my question and begins to tell me they are not given enough. I remind him that since you are not given enough, you should then use the glove money you collect to buy and use for your patients.
” He now begins to talk loud enough for the other women there to hear that gloves are very scarce in town that even he told people to go and buy they won’t see, and if they did see that in fact gloves that was sold for 1200 for a pack of a hundred was now #5000.
“At this point a nurse emerges from inside and begins to return the cards of the women who were waiting in line outside with their hundred naira that they don’t want wahala! This tactics worked because the women began to beg, that you know more than us, any thing you say is fine, just use any glove and give us let’s go the women wailed. I told the man and some women who cared to listen it was wrong and very dangerous.
“This COVID 19 will be comfortably distributed to all the households who came to vaccinate their child if one child or adult is positive with the virus as the nurse will continue to use the same gloves.
A visit to the University Teaching Hospital Ado Ekiti Roundoffnews reliably gathered from the workers that there has been shortage of glove , mask and other necessary preventive tools in the hospital.
The workers opened up that the supply from the management has been so poor nothing that doctors struggle for mask even in theatre hence the request for patients to buy glove personally since they cannot be using their salaries to buy gloves that would be used to treat patient.
“If you seek health care and you really think you need it, you will help us to get what we need, we don’t have the right to ask the management or query them, at the same time we can not use our bare hands to treat patients.
When contacted the chairman, Association of Nigeria Nurses and Midwives Ekiti State Chapter, Mr Kayode Fatomiluyi confirmed that he had received complaints of shortage of some working materials but denied the allegation of extortion and usage of glove for several people.
Fatomiluyi noted that no nurse would ever use a glove for several patients saying emphatically that it is not possible.
All efforts to speak with the commissioner for Health Dr Mojisola Yahaya KO made was unsuccessful as she did not respond to her calls.