A 70-year-old man has reportedly died after he was ignored by doctors and nurses on duty at both the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital and the Korle-Bu Polyclinic.
The deceased was rushed to the Emergency and Accident Unit of the Korle Bu Teaching Hospital on Thursday after he complained of having difficulties in breathing.
However, his family was left in utter disbelief when the doctor and some nurses at the facility continued tossing them around.
The patient subsequently lost his life at the Korle Bu Polyclinic where they were later directed to obtain a referral letter.
A member of the deceased’s family who spoke to Accra-based Joy FM said he was consistently ignored by the nurses on duty until his uncle died.
“When we got there, [Korle Bu Polyclinic] I rushed out of the car and went to the nurses' station and told her we have an emergency case and needed someone to take care of us and I was asked to bring him in,” a nephew of the deceased, identified as Selorm, said.
According to him, the nurses watched on without taking any step to attend to the suffering patient.
He said it was until he approached another nurse that he was told he needed to get a folder before his uncle can be treated.
The attendant who was to issue the folder was reportedly on the phone when Selorm got to her. She ignored him and although Selorm tried to get her attention, she was not perturbed.
He further explained that the doctor who showed up did not do much to help the situation after telling them he could not give the referral letter the family needed badly to get treatment for his uncle.
Selorm said his uncle died whiles they were preparing to take him to another hospital.
“No one asked us what was wrong with him. It was after he passed and they were filing the BID [Brought in Dead] form that the doctor asked if I knew the reason he was earlier admitted at Korle Bu.
“At no point did they attempt to help,” he added.
Meanwhile, the Deputy General Secretary of the Ghana Medical Association (GMA), Dr Justice Yankson, blamed the unfortunate situation on poor infrastructure rather than the doctor and nurses on duty.
He said most of the medical facilities in the country were “built in the colonial era and since independence, we have kept faith with them without any major and proper expansion or systematic plans to expand them to other regions and also having in place a world-class emergency medical service in the country.”
In his view, the poor infrastructure at the various hospitals are the causes of these kind of deaths, saying “when these things happen, it is made to look as if it is the health professionals who are the bad ones. They are rather working under very difficult circumstances.”
According to him, he wasn’t surprised by the situation, insisting such a thing always happens.
He, however, added that in any circumstance, once an emergency, patients should be able to get the needed treatment when they walk into any health facility.
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