What a sad day!

A few minutes past midnight on Monday, I received a phone call from Mrs. Abiodun, the wife of my friend who had been hospitalized at the Federal Medical Centre, FMC, Abeokuta. I had reported Abiodun’s matter in my diary and it attracted a lot of reactions including improvement to the environment of the hospital and the ‘successful’ surgical procedure that was done on Thursday, August 23. •Odegbami Odegbami Since Mrs. Abiodun’s phone call I have been angry, frustrated and pained by the helpless situation I find myself, unable to do anything when confronted with the truth of the present state of our health sector particularly in Ogun State. I have no right whatsoever to blame anyone for the state of affairs, not been privy to why things are the way they are, but the facts have to be confronted and stated if that’s the only thing we can do. The very first day that Abiodun was admitted into the FMC and I went to see him. Based on what I saw and experienced, common sense told me that unless we did anything else but leave him in that ‘hell hole’ it was likely he would not survive the aftermath of a surgical procedure in the environment. Here are the impossible options we had to confront: take him abroad as most rich Nigerians would have done. We did not have the resources. Move him to another hospital in Ogun State with a better post-surgery facility and environment. FMC is the only public tertiary hospital in the State with the facilities to perform the surgery. The others are secondary health facilities at most. Move him to a tertiary public medical facility in Lagos. That would require starting the treatment and tests all over again, a luxury that was not available because of the urgency.Segun-Odegbami4 Move him to a private hospital in Lagos. It would cost an arm and a leg that the immediate family and a few friends could not immediately muster. So, reassured by some positive developments immediately following my diary report, we left him in the care of a hospital that was, despite its best emergency efforts, suffering from the pangs of a long standing insufficient attention paid to the public health sector in the country. Through no fault of any particular persons, the medical infrastructure, facilities, environment and service that I saw at the FMC were not designed to manage and keep people with very serious ailments alive. The whole State is littered with horror stories about what the people are going through in the health sector. Every household has their own stories to tell. So, Abiodun was operated upon successfully on Thursday, August 23. When he was discharged to go home 6 days later on Wednesday, August 29th, even a blind man could see that it was premature. The man could barely walk and had only started taking his first liquid meals that morning. He was actually moved out of the hospital on a wheel chair. Two days later, on the 31st. of August, his situation deteriorated so badly at home that a mutual friend, Tunde Adegbola, visiting from Ibadan, took one look at him, called me up, and we agreed he should be immediately rushed back to the FMC. He was promptly re-admitted. The truth is that he was not fit enough to have been discharged after such a major surgery. The truth is that even whilst he was in the hospital there was a queue of equally ‘bad’ medical cases lined up waiting for a bed space that was not available. So, even Abiodun had to be discharged the moment there was a slight glimpse of his getting better. Unfortunately, he got worse. By the time he was returned to the hospital he was in a delirious state. I sensed, along with the rest of the close family, that he was in a race against death. Once again, the statistics of wasted human lives was about to be bolstered by the terrible state of our health facilities in the FMC. The hospital needs a very urgent surgical procedure itself, starting with the injection of funds to take care of very basic items in a litany of essential requirements. Two nights ago, when that phone call from his wife came at that time of the night, I just knew in my hearth, that it was the call I had prayed not to receive in this particular issue involving Abiodun.https://olaworld.blog/2018/09/08/what-a-sad-day

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