COVID-19 fear: How health workers avoid patients in Abuja hospitals, man narrates his experience

Mr. Sunday, a Carpenter at the Dutse Alhaji in Bwari Area Council of Abuja has narrated how health workers are avoiding patients in government hospitals over fear of being infected by COVID-19.

Mr. Sunday narrated how his brother’s wife who was about given birth at the Kubwa General Hospital was rejected for fear of Covid-19.

“When we pushed and asked the hospital why they are rejecting her despite the fact that she had carried out her antenatal in the hospital, a nurse said the delivery ward has been fumigated and nobody is allowed to go in there”.

He, however, told MAWA Foundation that they were referred to Maitama General Hospital where they were rejected for the second time.

The Maitama General Hospital referred us to Wuse General Hospital. On getting to the hospital, they rejected us making it three times from different government hospitals.

” It was when we got rejected from three different government hospitals that a nurse adviced us to go private Hospital, disclosing to us that health workers are afraid of delivering a woman for fear of COVID-19″, Sunday told MAWA officials.

“As soon as we got the information from the nurse, we rushed my brother’s wife to Daughters of Charity hospital in Kubwa where she gave birth to a set of twin, a boy and a girl”, Sunday said.

” We deposited the sum of N150k at the Daughters of Charity hospital for the delivery, we were given N22k as a refund despite that she did not undergo any operation “.

Sunday disclosed that before the brother’s wife incident, about four people in his area were rejected by two government hospitals when taken for admission.

He, however, said that in most cases, when you take patients to hospital, you need to have Doctors or Nurses who will help you lobby for treatment, otherwise you will be rejected.

” It is not about money, health workers are refusing to treat patients for fear of COVID-19, life during this pandemic is terrible and frustrating. I have many instances with my brothers wife being the most recent”, Sunday told MAWA officials.

“Those who have money now go to private Hospitals while the poor are at the mercy of the government hospitals”, he added.

This report is supported by the Open Society Initiative for West Africa (OSIWA).

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