Monday, April 13, 2015

Woman Died After Childbirth At Eko Hospital Due to Negligence - Petition

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A few days ago, the death was reported of Dolapo Adesanya, who had passed away after a complicated delivery at Eko Hospital in Lagos. Many blamed the hospital for what they called an avoidable death. A petition was even started which has received over 1,300 signatures as at today. The petition stated that negligence by Staff of Eko Hospital, Lagos resulted in the death of Dolapo Adesanya, and called on the Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria to sanction the Hospital.

A friend of the family who was close the events leading up to Dolapo's death wrote an article questioning the ethics of the hospital and calling for an investigation of what he termed negligence. Read below the statement from the hospital as well as other interested parties who have put out their own version of what is believed to have led to the death of the young mother of three. May her soul rest in peace...

Account of the death by a friend of the family...


This piece is a hard one for me to write, hard and very difficult. As I write this, I am filled with deep sorrow for what could have been that was not. This piece is not intended to do anything but to warn unsuspecting members of the public. A warning that is necessary at this time because “evil deeds thrive when good men do nothing”

My discourse is centred on the level of mismanagement, inefficiency and a total lack of respect for life exhibited by management and staff of EKO Hospital on Mobolaji Bank Anthony Way, Ikeja.

My friend’s wife, Dolapo, a young mother of 2 boys , with a promising banking career, pregnant with the 3rd child had complained of leg pains to her husband on Tuesday, March 31, 2015. Her husband took her to the EKO Hospital for treatment (their registered HMO provider), they were told that the leg pains were normal for pregnant women at her stage and were subsequently given some paracetamol tablets to use.

Getting home, the pains did not subside, in fact, it grew worse. It got to a point that she could not walk with the legs on her own. The husband had no choice but to return to the hospital on Friday April 3, 2015 at around 3pm when it was obvious things were not getting better. At that point, The doctor on duty advised them to wait for the consultant and Dolapo was made to sit out the ‘’wait’’ in a wheelchair as her legs could no longer support and carry her, in any case the consultant did not show up until Saturday afternoon being 04/04/1.

She repeatedly beckoned on the staff on duty to perform a CS and safely get the baby out as she could sense and feel that something was ominously wrong. The pregnancy was well into 8 months. Some scan were recommended and the person to conduct the scan had reportedly closed for the day and only surfaced at about 9pm on Friday and the wait dragged well into the night

Dolapo was in pains on the wheel chair, she was being moved from her ward to the scanning room when the head of the baby came out on the wheel chair, her husband screamed and rushed her quickly into the elevator, yes, ELEVATOR!!. The baby could not stand the trauma, he came out in transit, right there in the elevator. A nurse had to hold the baby’s head, supporting it while the elevator goes to labour theatre, the baby was pulled out before they could make it to the theatre. This was at 9.30pm on Friday. The baby became the centre of attention for the hospital staff of Duty while neglecting Dolapo all alone for more than 1 hr 30 mins while they attended to the baby to revive him.

She was left unattended to, in pains, right there in the theatre. She was eventually moved back to her ward . The consultant eventually turned up around 4pm on Saturday. The husband engaged him and he requested that some tests be done to ascertain what level of treatment or care to give. He was told she (the wife) would be fine and the test results would be ready by Tuesday because of the holidays.

On Sunday, April 5, 2015, at about 8am in the morning, I visited her in the hospital and sat beside her on the bed offering words of encouragements. She was still in pains, and she was hardly audible, she could only answer in nods and made attempts at a faint smile to reassure myself and her husband that she would be fine.

It came as a rude shock when I called the husband at about 12 pm and he was crying profusely, saying Dolapo is lying down lifeless and that I should please pray. I was to say the least devastated, I was asking loads and loads of questions and he kept saying please pray, pray.

I got to the hospital to meet the lifeless body on the bed, she was dead! What happened? How did this happen? Nobody could offer any explanation. There was no doctor around, I asked the nurse on duty and she just said she is dead. I recalled she was eating when I left earlier, how could she have gone from eating to being dead in less than 3 hrs?

The husband told me she was given an injection to suppress the pains on her leg and immediately started gasping for breath, oxygen tanks were brought in to revive her but it was too late. She was gone before anything could be done.

The body was left in the room for more than 24 hours, several prayer sessions were held to bring her back to life. In the more than 24 hrs period after her death, no doctor from EKO Hospital came out to say this was what happened. No personnel came around to ask people to leave the room, the body was not covered nor washed. It was simply business as usual for them.

It was normal for someone to give birth and die? The Medical Director of the hospital did not deem it fit to offer explanation or even try to prevail on the family to leave the body so that necessary medical procedures could be done.

I will leave my readers to ask questions from this write up, perhaps, I am being too expectant, maybe too optimistic about my expectations from a Hospital as reputable as EKO Hospital!

The family has accepted their fate and decided to move on…. But should we move on? Should we just accept this as normal? I was talking to a friend in my office yesterday and was shocked when he informed me that his wife also died in this same EKO Hospital some 6 years back and the same treatment was meted out on him!

Please pass this story around, let people know what is going on, don’t stop until it gets to the right quarters where something could be done to save others and for the doctors and hospitals to be more responsive to their duties of saving lives and not taking lives. Dolapo is gone but who knows who will be next?????

Alagba-Johanu Olabanjo Olusanya

Below is the press statement from the hospital posted on their website;

Maryland, Lagos April 11, 2015 – The management’s attention has been drawn to a one-sided social media narration of the unfortunate and tragic loss of 36 years old Mrs. Dolapo Adesanya after child birth while under the care of EKO Hospital on Sunday, April 05, 2015.

In addressing the misinformation contained in an expectedly emotion laden though vitriolic missive by a “good samaritan” over what is truly a sad and tragic outcome of an event, the hospital will consistently respect the ethical patient-doctor privileges even as it acknowledges the deep sense of loss being felt by the family, friends, colleagues and indeed her husband and parents.

Given the public interest in the matter however, it is important to be aware of these facts:

Every loss of life is regrettable and death is occasionally inevitable in a hospital, EKO hospital will continue to dedicate itself to the highest level of healthcare service which allows it to treat from the simplest to some of the most complicated cases for almost forty (40) years. It also uses all in its capacity to avoid preventable fatal outcomes.

The late Mrs. Adesanya became our patient from October 2011 and delivered one previous pregnancy successfully without any incident in a hospital where thousands of babies have been delivered in the last two years with mortality rate way below half of the National average despite being a tertiary referral center.

The late Mrs. Adesanya booked late for antenatal care at 26weeks.

The antenatal period was uneventful until she was admitted into the labour ward at 36 weeks gestation complaining of backache and lower abdominal pain resulting in her difficulty in walking. Clinical evaluation was performed. Certain investigations including abdominal ultrasound was performed and she ruptured her water during the latter. She was taken to the labour room where she was delivered of a premature baby.

She delivered the current baby prematurely at 36 weeks in a position that she found most comfortable in the labour room and the baby was resuscitated and is now in a stable condition in the special care baby unit.The administration of care and counseling to the late Mrs. Adesanya is well documented. Appropriate modalities of care were discussed with and offered Mrs. Adesanya at every stage.

The immediate post delivery period was satisfactory and she was transferred to the post-natal ward in a stable condition. Her condition remained stable for 34 hours after delivery.

On the faithful day she suddenly developed a cough, became breathless and collapsed and all efforts to resuscitate her proved unsuccessful. A clinical diagnosis of pulmonary embolism was made. Pulmonary embolism sometimes occurs in people with predisposing factors e.g. post-surgery and post deliveries etc without warning.

Further insight/confirmation into the cause of death and other predisposing factors would have been revealed by post mortem examination which the family refused, and we had to respect.

The hospital did not abandon the corpse but gave room to the request by the family members to exercise their faith and belief in the efficacy of prayers in the post mortem period which lasted 24hours; this was also equally respected.

The hospital participated in a meeting on Friday, 10th of April 2015 with the HMO and her employers.

The Hospital wants to state categorically that there has been no compromise to patient safety in this case, which is always the top priority. We appreciate that sudden unexpected death in whatever form can be traumatic and can lead to sometimes inappropriate actions from those affected understandably.
The hospital respects and asks that the public allow the family to grieve in this trying time. During this time, the hospital will continue to do its best to minimize the trauma for the family.

We thank patrons and concerned members of the public who called in for the support offered both the family and the hospital.

Our heartfelt condolence goes to the husband and family of Mrs. Adesanya.

Bimbo Ayuba is a more well informed friend of the dead Dolapo and shares some insight that seem to support the hospital's statement. She wrote;

My heart goes out to the family of the deceased especially to the husband of the deceased; it is never easy losing a loved one. I am a friend of the deceased and my conscience will not rest unless I tell the truth and put this matter in the true perspective.

1. The deceased was diagnosed with a lump/ tumour in the breast in 2012 and the lump was successfully removed in this same EKO Hospital.

2. Further investigations carried out by this same EKO Hospital, revealed that the lump/ tumour which was successfully removed was malignant, and the deceased was informed. She was asked to come for radiotherapy and also informed that she might have her breast removed to prevent the spread of the cancer but she refused.

3. Sometime later, she successfully delivered her first baby in the hospital, and still the pleads of the hospital for her to come for radiotherapy and possibly remove her breasts to prevent the spread of the cancer fell on deaf ears and she blatantly refused. God bless her soul.

4. Fast forward to 2015, the cancer had completely spread all over and even to her spine and this was the reason she was paraplegic and could not walk. She was confined to a wheel chair even before she was brought to the hospital.

5. On the fateful day, she fell into labour on her wheel chair and gave birth to the baby on the wheelchair. This delivery was traumatic to her cancer ridden body and to the poor baby and the baby was dead on delivery.

6. This same EKO Hospital resuscitated the baby and thank God the baby is alive till date.

7. Unfortunately the deceased passed away. But this is where the story begins. The family refused to allow the hospital to move the body to the mortuary and from 10am to 11am the following kept praying and speaking in tongues on her corpse believing that she would wake from the dead. After 24 hours of this misbehaviour, the hospital management instead that the body be moved to the mortuary, citing that there was a chapel there.

8. Few days later, the family came for the corpse and signed an undertaking that they did not require a post mortem.

9. Death is painful and tragic, and my heart goes out to the family but we should stand for the truth and not tarnish the image of a hospital that has built its reputation for over 30 years.

10. Rest in peace. God bless your soul.

Photo - Twitter

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