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Doctors' strike take toll on LUTH patients

By The Citizen

Patients at the Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH), Idi-Araba, Lagos, are counting their ordeals as resident doctors' indefinite strike enters the fourth week.

Reporters who visited the hospital on Wednesday reports that only few consultants were seen attending to many patients.

The National Association of Resident Doctors (NARD) had on Oct.1 directed its members nationwide to embark on an indefinite strike.

File: …stranded patients at a hospital
The NARD President, Dr Jibril Abdullahi, said that the strike was to protest poor funding of residency training.

The other categories of health workers - consultants, nurses, pharmacists, laboratory technicians and cleaners - were seen attending to patients.

One of the patients, Mrs Dolapo Afolabi, told NAN   that the strike was taking worsening the conditions of patients.

She regretted that strike by health workers had become incessant.

Afolabi urged that strike by health workers should be avoided in the interest of patients.

'Strike is taking place too often in our hospitals; this is very dangerous because people's lives are involved,'' she said.

Another patient, Alhaji Ibrahim Amodu, told NAN that he came from Ikorodu to keep an appointment with a specialist.

Amodu appealed to the striking doctors and the Federal Government to reach an agreement.

Miss Nkiruka Eloho said that she was used to the services of the teaching hospital because they were   cheap.

Eloho regretted that she had been unable to see her doctor since last week because of long queues of patients waiting for few consultants.

'I came here very early this morning but yet to see a doctor. Consultants are attending to those with critical conditions.

'It is likely that I will not see a doctor today again.

'I do not like to visit private hospitals where I may not get a specialist. Also, their services are expensive.

'The strike is depriving us access to doctors to look after our health,' she said.

Mr Femi Samuel told NAN: 'I spent the whole Tuesday without seeing a doctor because only few senior doctors were working.

'I decided to come early today, hoping that I would see a doctor to attend to me in time, but it is still the same story.'

The President of the LUTH chapter of NARD, Dr Emeka Ugwu, said that the strike was still on.

'During the emergency NEC meeting of NARD held on Oct.7, members were dissatisfied with the Federal Government's position on our demands.

'As a result, we have to continue with the nationwide strike,' he said. (NAN)