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By: Adesoji Adetona
…..I paid N10,000 for lab coat at UNIMED before my child was operated on __ father
……I was asked to pay for surgeon fee and theatre equipment used aside other bills —Father
Health care for children and women in ondo state which was hitherto free of charge in the state hospitals is now out of the reach for common men as they now charge exorbitant bill before patients can get treated.
The case of a father, whose three year old baby is admitted at the Ondo State University of Medical Science, UNIMED Teaching Hospital, Akure annex, really justified the situation of commercialising healthcare by the hospital.
The father of a three year old patient lamented the objectionable and inhumane charges he was billed at the medical facility.
The man appealed to Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu to intervene in the situation as comprehensive and tertiary health care in the state capital is dying gradually.
The man, Bayo Ganiyu told SUNSHINETRUTH how he was made to buy the lab coat surgeons would wear in the theatre before his child was operated on, adding that bought every necessary thing to be used to treat the child, including cotton wool and plaster.
Mr Ganiyu explained that his child was not operated on until he paid for the lab coat after which many other bills were given to him.
Hear him: “That hospital called UNIMED, I carried my baby there. The child is 3 and half years. I bought everything that was used to treat the baby including drugs, cotton wool and even plaster.
“They said we should go and buy them. Everything that was injected into her body such as drip, injections and so on; we bought everything. She was also placed on oxygen and we paid as well.
He explained that several tests were conducted before the baby was treated and he spent about a lot of money on tests alone. When the baby was about to be taken to the theatre because she was diagnosed for intestinal obstruction, Mr Ganiyu explained that he was mandated to buy the lab coats the surgeons would wear before the operation was carried out.
“They told us that before the baby is taken to the theatre, we must pay for the lab coats that the doctors would wear in the theatre. I was shocked but they told me that if I did not pay, the child would not be operated on. So I paid the money, which was N10,000. When I requested for the receipt, they did not give me any receipt.
“After the operation, the child was brought to the ward after which I was given another bill of N33,000. They said is from the theater they said 17,500 for pack and 15,500 for surgeon fee.
“I questioned them that why should I pay such a huge amount of money after I had paid N10,000 without any receipt. They told me that is how they do it. I told them that the treatment was supoosed to be free because the baby is still under five years old. They told me point blank that nothing is free.
“I was angry. I asked them what the “pack” means and they said it is for the equipment used in the theatre.
He narrated that he questioned why he should pay for scissors and other equipment used in the theatre after he was made to buy some materials when he got there. He also explained that he questioned the surgeon fee because the doctors are government employees.
“I was told that when the child is to be discharged from the hospital, I will still pay another bill. I told them I cannot pay such money. I was taken to one of their bosses (a doctor) and he also explained to me that I must pay all the bills given”, he explained.
Mr Ganiyu, who has not been paid a dime in the private organization he works for due to the current coronavirus pandemic, also berated the attitude of the doctors and nurses towards patients and their families at the health facility.
Efforts to get the reaction of the CMD of the hospital proved abortive.