Nigerians should demand from public office holders, as a matter of fundamental human right, qualitative healthcare delivery system.
The call was made by a Consultant Obstetrician and Gynaecologist, Dr. Rotimi Adewoye, on Tuesday while delivering an address on “Nigerian Medical Health System’s Current Challenges.”
The occasion was the launching of an e-health website in memory of Mrs. Busola Odedina, who died a year ago.
Adewoye stressed that Nigerians should see access to qualitative healthcare delivery system as a fundamental human right that must be enshrined in the Nigerian constitution and readily available to all.
He also called for the establishment of Standard Monitoring Council to punish erring doctors.
“It is so sad that healthcare delivery is not on constitutional recommendation in Nigeria. The entire Nigerian system is a big problem which is also affecting healthcare delivery system. Many deaths are due to medical errors as well as late report, wrong diagnosis, wrong treatment among other factors. Government at all levels really needs to declare a state of emergency in health sector.”
Adewole urged governments to encourage purchase of modern quality hospital equipment with interest-free loan while encouraging well-meaning Nigerians to be actively involved in politics in order to ensure good governance.
“Government must take full responsibility for the good health of all Nigerians while health insurance scheme must cover all Nigerians and all ailments,” Adewole concluded.
In his reaction, Mr. Bosun Odedina, husband of the deceased, said that they launched the Nigeriaehealth.org.ng so that people could have free access to quality healthcare services.
“Also launched in the UK same day, people should visit the website, ask questions bothering them on their health and experts will attend to their questions.”
According to Mr. Kunle Odedina, son of late Busola Odedina, his mum passed away in a Nigerian hospital under a circumstance that pointed to negligence and sub-standard medical practice.
She was 49.
“Everyday, very many promising Nigerians suffer such fate; unknown and unreported. To die is not really a problem, since we all as mortals have signed up for it as a part of the living experience. What is most painful however is avoidable death and Nigeria is replete with deaths that are avoidable to the point where the country is almost like a coffin of human carcass from our dysfunctional health management system which manifests itself in different forms.
According to him, they include carelessness of our care givers; inadequate experience of medical personnel; badly run health institutions and lack of information on the part of patients as to their ailments.
He said no nation could be truly great when its citizens lacked basic healthcare system.
He said the development of a nation was measured by a global tool known as the human development index (HDI) which was a statistic composite index of life expectancy, education, health and per capita income indicators.
“This tool is used to rank countries into four tiers of human development. Calculation of the index combines four major indicators: Life Expectancy for Health; Expected Years of Schooling; Mean Years of Schooling for Education; Gross National Income per capita for standard of living
“Every year the UNDP (United Nations Development Programme) ranks countries based on the HDI statistics released in its annual report. For the 2018 report as released freshly, Nigeria is ranked 157th out of 187 countries of the world so ranked. For the so called giant of Africa, this is an abysmal performance.
“It is the reason Busola didn’t survive a mere routine procedure. It borders on quality of our medical personnel and the advancement in modern health care delivery system they have been exposed to.
“Having come to this conclusion, we as Nigerians have two options, either to accept the current state of affairs and throw up our hands despondently, or to do something about the situation.
“We have decided to do something in our own little way to advance the care platform. Therefore, as part of activities to mark the first memorial anniversary of her passing, the family decided to launch Nigeriaehealth.org.ng as an online platform for relevant information and advice on health-related issues.
“The essence of this is to provide avenue for second opinion on various medical issues in order to properly guide citizens to make the right choices. The website is designed to offer the opportunity of second guessing our healthcare system in such a way that we can help to save lives in the long run.”
Nigeriaehealth.org.ng is an online platform for the discussion and dissemination of information on health matters only.
The website parades professional and experienced medical professionals such as General Practitioners and Surgeons, Pharmacists and Physiotherapists, Nurses and others from across the globe who have indicated interest to provide voluntary medical support services for those who may want to seek information or clarification on health issues.