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Family Accuses Lagos Hospital Of Causing Asthmatic Patient’s Death

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Elem Hospital, Festac Town, Lagos State, has been accused of the death of a 31 year old patient, Ifeyinwa Chikezie.

The family of the deceased accused the hospital of allegedly administrating wrong injection.

According to information gathered, the victim was an asthmatic patient, whose medical record was with the hospital.

Report revealed that the mother of two and her husband went to the hospital in company of her husband, Emeka Chikezie, to complain about her bad response to the use of her inhaler.

The doctor was reported to have allegedly administered the injection in a wrong way despite the effort of her husband to request for another doctor, who knew her medical history.

Ifeyinwa was said to have collapsed and died within 15 minutes of being injected. Emeka stated that the death of his wife was as a result of the wrong administration of an injection by the doctor, who was not familiar with her medical history.

He stated, “My wife worked with the National Oil Spill Detection and Response Agency in Surulere and Emel Hospital is her primary hospital. Her Health Maintenance Organisation covers everything. She was asthmatic and she often visited the hospital for treatment. We have been using this hospital for about five years now.

“On Saturday, she called me around 4.30pm that she wasn’t feeling well and she was having an asthmatic attack. I rushed back home, she used her inhaler and she was okay. After a while she started sweating and I suggested that we go to the hospital.

“We got to the hospital by 5.30pm. The receptionist told the doctor that there was an emergency. One guy came in and claimed to be the doctor alongside a nurse. I was trying to explain to the doctor that my wife’s case was a peculiar one, because I was not familiar with him. I had not seen him before then. I wanted to give him more information about my wife’s medical history and how her treatment could be handled, but he wouldn’t listen.

“I requested a doctor who was familiar with my wife’s medical history to attend to her, but this particular doctor challenged me asking if I am a doctor. I told him it was not about if I am a doctor or not; this had to do with my wife of seven years and how we had been managing her situation.

The husband of the deceased claimed that despite his effort to explain to the doctor, that there was an intravenous injection that was supposed to be gradually administered over a period of about 15 minutes, with the wife taking a deep breath at intervals, the doctor did not listen.

He added, “My wife was given the injection around 6pm and it was administered wrongly because the doctor injected her all at once. Immediately it was administered, my wife slumped and I had to call out for help. They tried to resuscitate her and after some time, they left me and said they were sorry and couldn’t do anything.

“After a while, I went to meet them demanding a reference letter to another hospital, but they declined, claiming that they didn’t have a letterhead paper. At about 11pm, they gave me a letter to deposit her corpse at the Navy Town Hospital. When I requested for her death certificate, they said they couldn’t issue it during the weekend and I was told to come back on Monday.

The elder brother to the deceased, Blaise Udunze, said the hospital was trying to cover up its mistake, adding that the family would hold it accountable.

He stated, “I was in Port Harcourt for an official assignment when I was called that my younger sister had died. I took the next flight back to Lagos on Sunday morning. In a hospital that has about five doctors, how would they let someone that did not know her history attend to her?

“We demand to either see the doctor or they should replay the CCTV footage of what happened. If they are not trying to hide anything; why is it taking so long for them to release the death certificate?”

She was immediately attended to by the medical officer on duty.

“On examination, she was in severe respiratory distress with significant reduced air entry and sparse rhonchi bilaterally. An assessment of severe asthma with imminent respiratory failure was made.

“She was immediately commenced on nebulised salbutamol with intranasal oxygen, while she was struggling. Intramuscular hydrocortisone was given, because patient was too restless to be administered with intravenous hydrocortisone.

“However, she was noticed to suddenly collapse and stop breathing within 15 minutes of presentation. Immediately, resuscitation measures were commenced, cardiopulmonary resuscitation, intramuscular adrenaline was also given to no avail.

The Clinical Director, Dr Leo Odudo, who spoke with Punch, stated that the patient was brought in a critical condition, adding that it was never a case of wrong administration of injection.

Odudo explained, “We first sympathise with the family for the unfortunate incident and we understand the fact that they are grieving now; this was a woman we had been caring for over the years. Asthma is a very manageable condition but unfortunately, people still die from it based on the circumstances of presentation.

“If an asthmatic patient delays in going to a health care facility, anything can happen. This is a facility where everyone is trained to provide standard health care to our patients and there is a standard procedure for attending to patients; at no point was a wrong medication administered that made her die.

“The way she was brought in on Saturday indicated that she already had the symptom well before she came to the hospital. She had several attacks in the past and we were able to manage them; but in the critical condition like she was brought in, it can tilt either way.

“From our own point of view, she delayed coming to the hospital for reasons best known to the family. And by the time she arrived at the hospital, she was already experiencing respiratory failure. We did all that we needed to do on our part.”

Odudo stated that the hospital had not issued a death certificate because that there was a standard procedure stipulated by the Lagos State Government that autopsy must be conducted for patients who die less than 24 hours after being brought to the hospital.

Source: Naija News

is an Associate at Naija News. He is a news media enthusiast, he holds a degree in psychology and loves exploring and sharing about the enormous power that lies in the human mind. Email: [email protected], Instagram: adeniyidman