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Health Minister directs hospitals to treat patients before demanding for police reports 



Muhammad Ali Pate

On Wednesday, the Coordinating Minister of Health and Social Welfare, Prof. Muhammad Ali Pate, issued a warning to hospitals in the country to prioritize saving lives above any other thing.

This comes after public criticism of hospitals following their refusal to attend to emergency cases, especially gunshot wounds, until police reports were provided.

This has lead to the death of many people, thereby prompting the minister’s present warning

The minister, who gave the warning in an interview on Channels Television’s breakfast program, Sunrise Daily, said the federal government had issued a directive to hospitals to always save lives first before making other demands.

He said:  “Recently, there have been concerns about patients who show up at the emergency facilities and police reports being asked about gunshots or accidents.”

“That’s unfortunate, but in all federal teaching hospitals, for instance, I was in Maiduguri at the weekend, life has to be saved first.”

“Life first and we have reemphasized that. All our hospitals I believe are doing that. No person should come with an emergency, or life-threatening challenge and be made to lose their life while awaiting police report.

“Saving lives comes first and that is the direction we have given; that is what we would pursue and we hope all hospitals, including private ones, will have this mindset that in health, it’s lives first.”

Prof. Pate said it was expected that states across the nation would also follow up with the federal government’s directive in their various hospitals, insisting that private hospitals also had the obligation to follow the same directive.

He reminded them that as health practitioners, saving lives was a priority everywhere in the world, stressing that Nigeria could not be different.

He also said the federal government had resolved to expand health insurance in the country, with the recent launching of the National Health Insurance Authority, NHIA.

The minister noted that access to affordable quality healthcare for all Nigerians was critical on the path to achieving Universal Health Coverage, UHC.

Recall that the minister had said that 90 percent of Nigerians had no access to health

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