Thursday, 23rd March 2023
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Abuja nurses demand justice over doctor’s assault on member

The National Association of Nigeria Nurses and Midwives (NANNM), FCT Chapter, has demanded justice over an assault on its member, Nurse Ebalu Marvis of the National Hospital, Abuja.

[files] Health care provider. (Photo by YASUYOSHI CHIBA / AFP)

The National Association of Nigeria Nurses and Midwives (NANNM), FCT Chapter, has demanded justice over an assault on its member, Nurse Ebalu Marvis of the National Hospital, Abuja.

The Chairman of the association, Comrade Deborah Yusuf, while briefing newsmen on Friday in Abuja, alleged that Dr Atinko-Sunday Ikeya of the same hospital assaulted Marvis while undertaking a responsibility at the hospital.

The chairman alleged that on June 13, Ikeya disregarded every medical and professional code of conduct to physically and verbally assault the nurse working as a colleague with him at the hospital.

According to Yusuf, the accused medical doctor insisted that the nurse has to leave the patient she was attending to dress the wound of another patient in the female medical ward.

She stated that the explanation of nurse Marvis to the doctor that she was attending to a patient on Naso Gastric tube feeding fell on deaf ears.

“Atinko walked into the ward and asked ‘Madam are you the one managing this patient? Why is this patient’s wound not dressed?” She told him that it is the O and G doctors that do dress the wound.

“These doctors earlier came around a few minutes ago for the dressing but the patient was in the dialysis unit, moreover the dressing pack was not available.

“Dr Atinko started shouting at her saying Madam come and do this patient’s dressing now. Ukamaka Godwin’s relative replied that the doctors in O and G departments said they will be doing the dressing.

“The nurse added that it was the O and G doctors that dressed the wound the previous day, but if he insisted let him the document.

“Instead of documentation he then went close to her and said Madam I said you should go now and do the dressing’, but she told him that this is a medication trolley and besides dressing pack was not available.

“Atinko went ahead and accosted Marvis who was at the point of wheeling a medication trolley out of the ward. The next thing that followed can only be imagined for a horrendous scene in a horror film as he slapped her,” Yusuf said.

The chairman stated that the nurse replied to the doctor by asking him what has she done to warrant the slap and that at that point, the nurse perceived the smell of alcohol from her attacker.

Yusuf, therefore, condemned the act of the doctor, describing such an act as a fundamental violation of medical professional ethics and a grave desecration of international principles.

She further said that the act breached some of the provisions of international conventions, protocols, and best medical practices.

Yusuf added that the act also violated many of the International Labour Organisation (ILO), especially the International Labour Organisation adopted Convention 190, held in June 2019, Against Violence and Harassment at the workplace.

She, therefore, urged the management of the hospital to do the needful by stepping into the matter and giving justice to the nurse through the application of civil service rules.

According to the chairman, if Dr Atinko is found guilty of a physical and verbal assault on the nurse, he should be subjected to disciplinary action as contained in the condition of service of the hospital and extant the civil service rules.

Yusuf disclosed that Gender-Based Violence (GBV) in the workplace had been a recurring decimal, especially among some of the association members.

Others at the briefing who also condemned the act are Nurse Akpi Awujah, Chairman NANNM, National Hospital Branch, and Nurse Sadiya Garba, Chief Nursing Officer, female medical ward of the hospital.

The accused (Dr Ikeya) and the management of the hospital are yet to react to the allegation and development, respectively.