Police in Lagos yesterday warned doctors to stop rejecting victims of gunshot. According to the command, any doctor who rejects gunshot victims is criminally liable and will be prosecuted accordingly.
The warning followed a media report that a gunshot victim, who was rejected by a hospital, later died.
The state Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Chike Oti, said: “The attention of the Nigeria Police, Lagos State Command, has been drawn to a Newspapers publication of Monday, May 14, captioned, ‘Hospital rejects victim over bullet injuries.’
The story goes that one 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 gunshot wounds.
“The Act, however, requires the hospital treating such a patient to report the fact to the nearest police station within two hours of commencement of treatment.”
Oti added that the Lagos State Commissioner of Police, Imohimi Edgal, saddened by the allegation against the Reddington Hospital, directed all Area Commanders and Divisional Police Officers in the state to henceforth, arrest and diligently prosecute any medical practitioner who rejects a gunshot victim on the grounds of no police report.
“The commissioner wants doctors to note that the Act recommends a fiveyear- jail term for any person, hospital or authority, which refused to do his bit, resulting in the death of any person with bullet wounds,” Oti said.
He added that such medical practitioners or hospitals would be prosecuted.
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