Alimosho General Hospital, Igando, is unarguably one of the most visited hospitals in Lagos state but sadly despite the large numbers of Nigerians visiting the facility daily for their health challenges, it has acute shortage of medical personnel.
Legit.ng's editor Aanu Adegun in this report shares first hand experience at the Mother and Child Complex (MCC) of the facility.
Arrival at the mother and child emergency unit of the hospital around 9.30am
We arrived at the hospital around 9.30 on a Saturday morning with 2 sick children (one emergency). We met several people waiting to see the doctor. There was only one doctor on duty and we were told that she was attending to in-patients.
Doctor started seeing us around 1pm
The doctor started seeing new cases around 1pm.
The doctor attended to one of our kids around 4pm
It was 4pm before it got to our turn. The doctor saw our emergency case first and placed our baby on admission. She could not see our second child immediately - "her case was not serious as the first one". Shortly after attending to few others after us, the heavily pregnant doctor left the emergency unit to attend to cases in other wards.
A brief description of the MCC and how doctors shuttle six stair cases
The MCC is a giant three-story building edifice with treacherous slam stairs. It housed all the wards related to maternal and child including recovery ward. We later got to know that the doctor is the only one on duty in all the wards. We were also told that on weekends, there is another doctor attending to the wards but the doctor leaves by 4pm.
A doctor who is on duty in all the wards will have to shuttle 6 slam staircase to attend to patients.
We got a bed around around 7pm
After we were seen by the doctor, we were asked to get some drugs and other things need for the treatment of our child. After we got the necessary things the doctor told us to purchase from the pharmacy, we were finally given a bed at the emergency unit. The bed did not have a bed sheet. When we complained, the nurse asked us to go get the bed sheet ourselves. When we complained further, she said if we cannot get a bed sheet, then we should come so that they can refer us to another hospital. We simply shut up and used the wrapper we bought the baby with as the bed sheet.
Doctor finally attended to our second child around 8pm
Many hours after we came to the hospital, the doctor finally saw our second child.
Treatment commenced on our first child around 8:30pm
We got there around 9am in the morning but treatment commenced on our child at the emergency ward around 3:30pm. In fact, the nurse who was also heavily pregnant like the doctor wanted to start administering the treatment when another emergency (pregnant bleeding lady) was rushed in. She had to leave us to attend to the new woman. It took a while for the second nurse to start administering the medication on our child. (We later discovered that the first nurse that was attending to us) was the one in charge of mothers -reason why she abandoned us completely.
A bleeding pregnant woman angrily left
One lady whose phone charger the reporter was using lamented that she had not been attended to hours after she came. The reporter also lamented, pointing out that the nurse even left his daughter because of a bleeding pregnant woman. The young lady who said she was referred to the hospital from Isheri angrily said that she was also bleeding. She (probably in early stage of pregnancy because no bump was showing) said she had changed pad over 20 times since she got there - 'Is it because I am not rolling on the floor' - she lamented.
Later, she came and retrieved her charger, claiming that her husband asked her to leave the hospital immediately.
One doctor, two separate nurses
The doctor we met on arrival around 9am was the same doctor that was on duty throughout the night. But the nurses changed duty. Here we have one nurse for the children emergency block and another nurse for mothers' emergency block.
This is is the same trend we experienced until we left there on Wednesday. The doctor will resume in the morning and work till the following day.
Help us beg government to employ personnel
On Monday, the reporter met a doctor and senior officer of the hospital and lamented the delays in seeking treatment. They begged and said it was not their fault. They said they have shortage of staff. The doctor said - Help us put it on Twitter, Facebook. Help us beg the government to recruit medical personnel. We are not finding it easy.
One of the senior staff also pointed to a newly built edifice (Fantastic building by the way). The staff said they just built that but with no new staff - "how are we supposed to cope?" She lamented.
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Security officers' plea for tips
Meanwhile, at the entrance of the MCC, security officers stationed there will hail and asked you not to forget them when you are going or coming out. One angry man who entered the building alongside the reporter turned to him and lamented - Do these people think we came here to dine and wine? Imagine!
The reporter smiled, thinking of the cost of drugs he just purchased at the hospital's pharmacy. He sighed and said to the man: It is not their fault!
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