Friday, April 25, 2014
The following story may be true, partly true or just a figment of my imagination:
A distraught parent rushes into the hospital (a private hospital) screaming for help that her toddler is dying, the doctor rushes to her side and asks what the problem is, the parent tearfully says that her child kept some peanuts up his nostril which suddenly lodged and blocked the passage, now the child is unable to breathe and the peanut/s can't be removed.
The doctor looks at the poor child who is already turning blue and tells the parent that it would be a complex procedure but they may be lucky and the cost would be 100,000 Naira (about 550 dollars);the distraught parent says :'Doctor please remove it and I will pay anything you want!
The doctor calmly looks at the child going blue, looks into his nostril and picks a little forcep, in 2 seconds, he has removed the peanuts from the nostril.
The amazed parent jumps for joy and hugs the doctor.
The doctor then asks for his 100k payment.
The parent looks at him and says, 'Doctor, 100k for what? What special thing did you do?'
Should the parent pay the 100k?
Was the doctor just greedy?
How much should the parent pay if not the 100k?
Should they re-negotiate the fee?
If you were the parent what would you do?
If you were the doctor, what would you do?
Thursday, April 24, 2014
On a recent training trip to one of the hospitals in the UK, I had reason to require the use of their toilet facilities while trying to familiarize myself with the hospital. Like a typical Nigerian who will rather not ask directions I trudged along till i found a toilet sign and hesitated before entering because - naturally - I expected it to be locked; but alas! The doors opened as if I had just shouted 'open Sesame!', I entered cautiously not knowing what I would find on the floor or in the toilet or... ahem on the wall.
All my fears turned out to be needless as I found a well kept toilet, with water (of course), soap and tissues! To cap it up there were mirrors and choice of hot and cold water!
I know I must be sounding bush now, like what is the big deal in all these?
Well,this was a hospital that people trooped in and out like a market.
Questions that came to my head were:
How could they possibly afford so much soap, and how come they had so much tissues to waste, you could literally wrap yourself from head to toe with the tissues provided and still have enough to lie down on (okay I exaggerate a little).
Back home I was on a visit to one of our local public hospitals and felt the familiar call of nature, I vowed not to respond to this call until I got home - but invariably the monsters in me kept tugging at my intestines and I had to give them my complete attention; I had no choice. I had to use a toilet in the facility.
I tried the approach I used in Uk and walked through the hospital hall looking for a toilet sign which I found after a little walk, the surrounding looked pretty decent and there was no queue at the door or people scrambling to use it; this was too good to be true! Elated I walked to it and turned the handle - then I understood, the door was locked! This was a toilet that in the grand design was made for general public use!
Not to be outfazed (and desperate) I played the doctor card and got the keys to the moderately well kept toilet with the usual old drug containers used to collect water for.... ahem cleaning up; no tissues, no soap anywhere in sight.
My mind went back to my hospital at work and how I've never dared to go inside the toilets patients use in my many years of working there (the view from several yards away might be responsible for this).
But i'm really curious to know, so please is there anyone out there that has ever used a toilet in a Nigerian public hospital? What was your experience like? Did you find tissues, soap or water? I really would like to know.
Another question, if by chance these were not available can you proffer a cause or a solution? Like maybe the astronomically high cost of tissues.