Controversy Over Death of Toddler in Federal Medical Centre

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• Hospital sets up seven-man probe committee
Emmanuel Addeh in Yenagoa
There was controversy at the Federal Medical Centre, Yenagoa, Bayelsa State, on monday after the parents of a toddler who died at the centre accused a medical doctor who treated the baby of injecting him with an overdose of drugs.

But the management of the FMC said yesterday that the hospital had already constituted a seven-man committee to investigate the circumstances that led to the death of the little child in the hospital.

Parents of the deceased child, Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Mbonu, insisted that the situation surrounding the death of the baby was caused by the doctor on duty at the time.
“When the doctor came in, she was mixing the drug; and she shook the drug for close to 30 minutes. So, the other doctor there asked her: ‘why are you shaking this drug for so long?’

“She said she had to shake it very well. I said they used to cut this drug and use 2mls syringe, why are you using 5mls syringe for my son? She said, ‘do I want to teach her, her job?’”

“I brought out my baby’s leg, she now used 5mls syringe and injected the first one with speed; collected the second one and injected, the third one; then my baby vomited on my body. As soon as he vomited, my baby was just shaking.

“I was shouting, “Doctor, doctor. She left immediately. I was running in the FMC, they didn’t talk to me. My baby died in my hands”, mother of the baby alleged.

Before now, there had been several complaints by persons who seek medical services at the FMC Yenagoa over alleged negligence and shabby treatment of patients by nurses and doctors at the hospital.

Also, the father of the deceased child, appealed to the police and other relevant stakeholders to come to their aid, vowing that he would use the unfortunate death of their child to fight against the injustice little children were subjected to at hospitals.

But Mr Bernard Akpedi, the Public Relations Officer of the FMC, who confirmed the development on Monday, said the hospital was not taking the matter lightly.

“The management  is very unhappy and sad about the death of the child. Management has set up a seven-man committee headed by a senior consultant. The committee does not comprise persons from the FMC alone. They have a representative from the International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA) as well.

“We want to be as transparent as possible and ensure the true report of all that transpired. Expectedly, the committee will turn in its report at the end if this week”, he said.