Mary Samuel, a nurse who works at the Hospital for Trauma and Surgery, Oniru, Lagos, has narrated how she was physically assaulted by the relatives of Odinachi, a patient on admission, for refusing to give her medications against the intervals instructed by a doctor.
Samuel told FIJ that she was beaten by Durugo’s two sisters on May 24, after the patient told them drugs were not given to her on time whenever she needed them.
“I resumed duty around 8 am on that day and was re-assigned to Durugo. The male nurse who was originally taking care of her was called to accompany another patient in an ambulance for a test,” Samuel told FIJ in an interview.
“The male nurse handed Durugo over to me, saying she was due for a pain reliever by 1 pm.
“But by 12:50 pm, Durugo, who was handed over to me, started pressing her bell, calling for my attention, and I went to attend to her.
“She told me she was in pain and wanted her pain relief medication. I told her she wasn’t due for medications until 1 pm but I would give her right away since she was in pain. I prepared the drugs and gave them to her at 12:58 pm.
“But, shortly after, she pressed the bell again at 1:30 pm to ask when she would be given her next medications. I told her it would be by 6 pm and she said okay.”
DURUGO’S REQUEST FOR MORE DRUGS
Samuel said Durugo would continue ringing the nurses’ station to demand for more drugs.
“At 2 pm, she pressed the bell again and I went in. She then said she was in pain, and that even if it was paracetamol, I should give her. Meanwhile, at this point, a pain relief in form of intravenous fluids was still being passed into her body. So, I could not honour her request,” she said.
“At 2.30 pm, she called again and told me she was in pain. I told her I couldn’t give her anything outside the procedure that had been laid out by the doctors. I also made her understand that the necessary medications had been administered on her, and that her next medication would be by 6 pm.
“When she pressed the bell again after a few minutes, I asked a nurse assistant to go see her. When the assistant got there, she said she needed to ease herself. After this, she again asked the assistant when the next set of drugs would be given to her. The assistant came to me to ask on her behalf and I once again told her 6 pm.
“At 3 pm, she again pressed the bell and was saying she was in pain. I explained to her that I couldn’t give her the medications then and she threatened to report me to my boss and I told her to go ahead because I couldn’t go against the doctor’s prescription.”
Samuel told FIJ that she reported the matter to her HOD, making sure that another nurse was present.
THE ASSAULT BY DUGO’S FAMILY MEMBERS
“My HOD refused to see her but instead asked me to report to the doctor on call. The doctor wrote new prescriptions that were to be given to her by 4 pm and I administered them. Fortunately, her nurse returned and I handed her over to him immediately,” said Samuel.
“However, when he went to administer the next dose of drugs by 6 pm, she refused to allow him treat her and told him she wanted me. Meanwhile, the nurse reportedly said he heard her telling her relatives over the phone that I refused to give her pain relief all day and that they should start coming to the hospital.
“An hour later, two strangers came into the hospital asking for me. I told them I was Mary and they started beating me, saying I was the one who made their sister cry over the phone.
“They tore my uniform and gave me marks on my neck and face.
“When my boss returned, he said he was going to discharge them right away and get them to apologise to me. However, when he went to see the patient and came back, he said I should be the one to apologise to the patient.”
Samuel said she refused to apologise because she was sure she had not offended the patient and her family members in anyway.
When FIJ contacted the hospital for comments on the incident, Jane Olanipekun, the hospital’s administrative officer, asked that our reporter come down to the hospital to hear the details, as there were many sides to it.
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