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Lecturer accuses LUTH of negligence after brother’s death

A lecturer, Demian Ademulegun, has accused the Lagos University Teaching Hospital, Idi Araba, of causing his brother’s death.

Demian told our correspondent that workers at the hospital left his brother, John unattended to at the facility’s car park for 10 hours, which aggravated his health condition and led to his death.

According to Demian, the doctor, who was on night duty at the accident and emergency section of the hospital on Thursday, April 23, 2020, claimed that his brother could not be admitted to the facility and allegedly refused to attend to him.

The 62-year-old lecturer stated that when John was eventually attended to after several hours, he was confined to a corner in the hospital without any family member allowed to visit him till he passed away.

He said, “I took my elder brother to a private hospital around 12am on Friday, April 24, 2020, when he took ill, but we were turned back when we told them that he was complaining of stomach pain and shortness of breath. We were referred to the Infectious Diseases Hospital, Yaba.

“When we got to the IDH around 1am, we saw a doctor, who said that we could not bring him into the facility and told us to go to LUTH. On getting to LUTH, the female doctor on night duty at the accident and emergency section just stood aloof and said we could not bring him into the facility and asked us to go back to the IDH.

“I told her that we were just coming from there and she insisted that we had to take him back. We took my brother back to the IDH and the doctor there told us that the facility had been turned into an isolation centre and that my brother could not be admitted there except he had tested positive for COVID-19, so he told us to go back to LUTH.

“We went back to LUTH and the same doctor we saw initially met us at the car park and insisted that my brother could not be brought into the facility and I was furious and had to ask her if it meant that anybody who was sick had coronavirus disease, but she did not answer me and just left.

“We took him to some private hospitals when he was complaining that he needed oxygen, but the hospitals said they didn’t have oxygen. We went to the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital and the doctor, who attended to us, took his temperature, which was 36 degrees, and referred us to LUTH again.

“When we got back to LUTH around 3.30am, we were left at the car park unattended to till around 9am when another doctor said he was going to arrange where they would put my brother, but we did not see him till around 2pm, when my brother was put on oxygen somewhere in the hospital and left unattended to till he died around 9pm.

“The situation is terrible and if care is not taken, all of us will die in this manner. I learnt that in the whole of LUTH, there is no PPE and this is making the health workers scared of treating patients, who are not positive for COVID -19. Does it mean that anyone who is sick in Nigeria has COVID-19 and should not be treated? This is gone but other cases will happen if not checked.”

The lecturer further alleged that the corpse of the Ondo State-born John had not been released to the family, adding that they were told that the matter had become a state government’s case.

When contacted, the Public Relations Officer, LUTH, Kelechi Otuneme, urged the bereaved family to approach the management of the hospital to make a report about the incident.

He said, “This sounds strange because it is not in our culture; let the brother of the deceased come and make a formal report to the hospital’s management so that we can look into the matter.

“We don’t know the doctor who attended to the patient, but if Demian comes and makes a complaint to the hospital management, the hospital will know exactly what happened and take it up from there.”

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