The Lagos State Police Command has sent out strict warning to medical practitioners in the state, and by extension, Nigeria, that failing to treat victims of gunshots is an offence that is criminal.
In reaction to a publication on Monday, May 14, 2018 on the Punch Newspapers about doctors in a particular hospital failing to treat a victim of gunshot, the Command said;
“The attention of the Nigeria Police, Lagos State Command, has been drawn to the Punch Newspapers publication of Monday, May 14, 2018, captioned ” Hospital rejects victim over bullet injuries.”
The story goes that one Engr. Adebayo Akinwunmi, a senior engineer with an Information and Communications Technology company, was shot and wounded by armed robbers in his house at Ofada-Mokoloki, Ogun state and was brought to Reddington hospital, Ikeja for treatment only to be refused admission on the unlawful and inexcusable grounds that there was no police report.
The Command considers the action of the hospital as cruel; perhaps, an indication that the hospital management may be ignorant of the “Compulsory Treatment and Care of Victims Of Gunshot Act, 2017.
In the light of this development, the Command wishes to inform all medical practitioners in Lagos state , that the Act demands that every hospital in Nigeria whether public or private shall accept or receive for immediate and adequate treatment with or without police clearance any person with a gunshot wounds. The Act, however requires the hospital treating such a patient to report the fact to the nearest police station within two (2) hours of commencement of treatment.
The Commissioner of Police, Lagos State, CP Imohimi Edgal, saddened by the allegation against the Reddington Hospital, has directed all Area Commanders and Divisional Police Officers in Lagos State to henceforth arrest and diligently prosecute any medical practitioner who rejects a gunshot victim on the ground of no police report. The CP wants doctors to note that the Act recommends a 5-year-jail term for any person, hospital or authority who stands by or omits to do his bit which results in the unnecessary death of any person with bullet wounds.”
Information reaching Aledeh has it that the man who was abandoned by the medical practitioners, Mr. Akinwunmi has given up the ghost in yet another case of professional negligence.