BILL ON ACCIDENT VICTIMS UNDERWAY IN DELTA
BY FESTUS AHON
UGHELLI - A bill that will criminalize refusal by any medical personnel, hospital/clinic to attend to victims of road accidents would soon be enacted in Delta State.
Already, a bill to establish the Delta State Paramedics Board and Commercial Vehicle Passengers Welfare Scheme has passed its second reading on the floor of the state House of Assembly.
This followed the conclusion of debate on the merits and demerits of the bill by members during which only one legislators opposed the establishment of the board with the rest in favour.
Leading the debate on the bill, the sponsor, Edoja Rufus Akpodiete said the bill sought to establish a board that would be charged with responsibilities of protecting passengers traveling within and outside the state.
Akpodiete explained that many hospitals/clinics usually refuse to give required attention to accident victims for fear of who would pay the bills, saying that the law when enacted would put an end to such unprofessional conduct.
He explained that the law would make it a criminal offence for any refusal to attend to such victims, maintaining that the main trust of the bill was to save lives and promote professionalism.
Akpodiete said operators of the scheme would be on 24 hours alert to take care of emergency cases from the point of accident to the hospital, stating that for effective coordination, there would be designated clinics, hospitals or Health Management Organizations, HMO, to handle such cases across the state.
The bill has been committed to the committees on Health and Transport which had been directed by the Speaker, Victor Ochie to organize public hearings on the bill with contributions from Nigeria Medical Association and the National Union of Road Transport Workers, NUTRW.