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Unintended pregnancy: Consult gynaecologist for quality family planning-Physician urges couples

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A physician, Dr Andrew Ekharogbon, has advised couples to consult a gynaecologist for quality family planning services to prevent unintended pregnancy and reduce the number of abortions.

Ekharogbon, a Senior Medical Officer, Vicar Hope Foundation, gave the advice in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria in Umuahia on Monday.

Ekharogbon, who decried the alarming rate of unplanned pregnancy in the country, also urged couples to have agreement on how to plan their family.

He said that the gynaecologist would counsel the couples on the method suitable for them.

He said, “The problem in Nigeria is that, we go for cheaper things. Most women go to retired nurse or a non-professional who will insert  family planning method for them.

“Later, it will become a problem and they will begin to face the consequences.

“But if you go to a well established hospital, see a gynaecologist, not just any doctor, he or she will counsel you on the effects of the family planning methods.

“You will also be told to report to the hospital if you notice anything outside such methods.

“But most of the women never report to their doctor or the hospital. So it is a big problem,’’ he said.

The physician called for sensitisation among men and women on family planning, adding that most of them did not even know what it was all about.

“They need to be sensitised because Nigeria is experiencing increased population and cannot even cater for the existing ones.

“A lot of parents cannot provide for their children, so why are you producing more.“

NAN reports that Nigeria recorded 1.3 million unwanted pregnancies and stopped 735,000 unsafe abortions in 2018.

This is according to the statistics released by the International Conference of Family Planning (ICFP) in Kigali, Rwanda.

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COVID-19 could lead to millions of unintended pregnancies: UN-backed data

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Ongoing lockdowns and major disruptions to health services during the COVID-19 pandemic could result in 7 million unintended pregnancies in the coming months, according to data released on Tuesday by the UN Population Fund (UNFPA) and partners.

They estimate that the number of women unable to access family planning or facing unintended pregnancies, gender-based violence and other harmful practices, could “skyrocket” by millions due to the crisis, according to a press release obtained by Xinhua.

“This new data shows the catastrophic impact that COVID-19 could soon have on women and girls globally,” said Natalia Kanem, UNFPA Executive Director. “The pandemic is deepening inequalities, and millions more women and girls now risk losing the ability to plan their families and protect their bodies and their health.”

The research was conducted by UNFPA, in collaboration with Avenir Health, Johns Hopkins University in the United States, and Victoria University in Australia.

COVID-19 is having an enormous impact on women and girls as health systems become overloaded and facilities close, or provide a limited set of services which they need. At the same time, many women and girls also are skipping important medical check-ups for fear of contracting the virus, said the press release.

Globally, around 450 million women across 114 low and middle-income countries use contraceptives, according to UNFPA and partners.

They project that if health services remain disrupted and lockdowns continue for six months, some 47 million in these countries may not be able to access modern contraceptives, resulting in around 7 million unintended pregnancies.

There also will be 31 million additional cases of gender-based violence during the same period, with 15 million more cases expected for every three months the lockdowns continue, the press release said.

Similarly, an additional 13 million child marriages could take place this decade as the crisis has disrupted efforts to stop this practice.

(XINHUA)

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S. African ruling party warns U.S. of unintended consequences from trade wars

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The ruling African National Congress (ANC) has the U. S. of unintended

consequences arising from its trade wars with other countries.

This came after the South African rand continued its depreciation and the fuel price skyrocketed to its

highest level ever.

The ruling party blamed the U.S. for the rand depreciation and the fuel price hike.

“The rand depreciation is beyond our control and is fueled largely by U.S. trade wars, the selling of assets

in emerging markets and portfolio outflows,” the party said in a statement emailed to Xinhua.

“We also accept that the fuel price increase is inevitable due to global crude oil prices increases” as a

result U.S.-imposed sanctions on some oil producing countries, the ANC said.

The ANC called on the U.S. to “consider the unintended consequences of its trade wars and the ripple effects

its imposition of sanctions on some oil producing countries have on emerging economies.”

“We also join the call on the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) to help lower fuel prices

by increasing oil production,” the party said.

The rand, which has kept falling recently, continued its downward trend on Wednesday, decreasing 0.0316 or 0.23 per

cent to 13.6368 against the dollar, from 13.6684 in the previous trading session.

Also on Wednesday, the petrol price increased by 26 cents a litre for 93 octane, with 95 octane fuel up by 23

cents, while diesel was hiked 26 cents per litre.

The fuel price hike has sparked grievances and complaints from the public.

ANC national spokesperson Pule Mabe said the ANC notes with “deep concern” the continued weakening of the rand

and the implications thereof for the country’s growth prospects and inflation targeting.

He said the ANC is further concerned by the hikes in fuel price which is putting a squeeze on all aspects of life of

fellow South Africans.

The rate at which the fuel price increases are happening “is unbearable and we can neither turn a blind eye nor

wish them away,” said Mabe.

He said the ANC calls for strong action to arrest this situation.

SH

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Health

CSOs conducts perception study on COVID-19 in Lagos

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The Lagos Civil Society Coalition Against COVID-19 says it has embarked on a perception study to ascertain the success, impacts and unintended consequences of responses deployed by the Lagos State Government toward containment of COVID-19 pandemic.

Its Executive Director, Humanity Family Foundation, Mr Razaq Olokoba, made this known at a press briefing on Wednesday in Lagos.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the coalition is a platform of non-governmental organisations committed to process-led engagement of public health concerns, as well as governance issues relating to COVID-19 pandemic.

The coalition is particularly concerned with monitoring and reporting on the responses being deployed toward containing the spread of the infection.

Olokoba said that the coalition became imperative in Lagos State considering the magnitude of threats to public health constituted by the virulent nature of COVID-19 pandemic.

He noted that the perception study would examine predisposing factors, as well as level of vulnerability to transmission of the virus in communities.

“The perception survey is accessing impacts of the lockdown, growing numbers of infection, high rate of community transmission and options available for mitigating the spread of the virus.

“The survey is also targeted at evaluating impacts of critical measures such as total lockdown, social/physical distancing, personal and environmental hygiene, information dissemination, ease of lockdown, #MaskupLagos initiative, neighbourhood /community engagements.

“The perception survey also seeks to evaluate gaps and shortcomings noticeable in government interventions and how the measures could be improved upon,” he said.

According to him, the outcomes of the study will enable the coalition to properly engage the government toward scaling up strategies for contact-tracing, testing and containment of the virus at the community level.

He noted that the coalition would regularly provide updates of its responses to COVID-19 in the state with periodic evaluation of impacts of responses on the environment, awareness creation, performance of government and motivation of healthcare workers.

“The coalition would undertake assessment of engagement of compliance with measures introduced by government and agencies toward controlling the spread of COVID-19.

“We would regularly share salient facts on COVID-19 pandemic with the populace as regards the prevailing myths and seemingly misleading narratives on COVID-19 pandemic,” he said.

Olokoba maintained that the coalition appreciates and supports the government’s
efforts toward containing the spread of the pandemic thus far.

“We, therefore, envisage continued commitment of Lagos residents across board to make huge success of responses being deployed by the government,” he said.

Olokoba said that the coalition would undertake training on monitoring and reporting of situations in the isolation centres, undertake social dialogues on COVID-19 and sensitise journalists and social media influencers.

He added that the coalition would mobilise COVID-19 Civic Engagement Situation Room and engage CSOs actors with networks across the 20 Local Government Areas and 37 Local Council Develepment Areas in the state.

The Situation Room will periodically review and analyse impacts of COVID-19 interventions and as well access progress of response measures deployed in containing COVID-19 pandemic,” he said.

According to him, the coalition is partnering the Nigerian Environmental Society (NES), which is currently undertaking COVID-19 related Air Quality Study for Lagos State.

Olokoba listed some organisations which were part of the Coalition as, YALI Nigeria South West Region; Project Heart to Earth; National Youth Council of Nigeria and EnviroNews Development Network.

Edited By: Olagoke Olatoye (NAN)

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Health

Lockdown hinders access to FP information, services – Expert

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Prof. Josiah Mutihir, a Family Planning expert, says the lockdown occasioned by COVID-19 pandemic has negatively impacted access to family planning information and services worldwide.

Mutihir spoke as Guest Speaker on a Zoom Meeting on “Why Access to Contraception is Critical in Covid-19 Response” , organised by the Development Communications Network (DevComs) on Friday in Asaba.

According to him,  due to the COVID-19 pandemic, families are compelled to stay home, day and night, for periods of between one to 12 weeks depending on the country or state, hence facilitating intimacy.

He noted that as at April 22 over 182,000 deaths  from COVID-19 have been reported globally and that health systems have concentrated on the curbing the spread of the virus.

He said though the pandemic has had and still has enormous effects on all economies worldwide, individuals, families, communities have been hit by poor resources to meet basic needs including feeding.

“This lockdown has brought the husband and wife or spouses face to face for long periods. Idleness has set in and increased sexual desires and activity result.

“Where the woman is not protected, unwanted pregnancy is likely the outcome in most instances where the woman is still in the reproductive age and is not on any method of contraception,” he said.

He, however, observed that there were other important health issues with far reaching consequences that cannot be ignored, notably these include family planning and reproductive health.

According to him, the need for family planning does not disappear during a pandemic and therefore should not be ignored or neglected.

“Already, there has been the disruption of supply chains of contraceptive commodities, closure of health clinics providing FP information, counselling and public fear about visiting health facilities at this time of lockdown.

“The gains in uptake of modern FP methods in the country over the years is likely to be lost during the pandemic with serious short, medium and long-term consequences.

“Family planning is a life-saving intervention mitigating increased morbidity and mortality resulting from unintended pregnancies.

“It is estimated that a 10 per cent proportional decline in the use of contraceptive methods, caused by reduced access worldwide, will result in additional 49 million women with unmet need for FP, and 15 million unintended pregnancies within a year”.

Mutihir, therefore, recommended that adequate and clear information for the public on family planning methods, using telehealth, particularly the natural and other methods for practice at a time of dire need when the other methods cannot be accessed.

He said that there should be public enlightenment to sensitise the people on availability of contraceptive methods in the pharmacies, which are open during the lockdown.

“Relevant authorities should put accessing family planning service as essential service and should be included on the exemption list for restricted movements.

“Reproductive Health Department of Federal Ministry of Health should come up with strategies to provide commodities using the last-mile distribution network to get as far as possible to the grassroots at this time

“There should be free commodities in addition to free consumables at this time, to make unfettered access to all clients including Private Clinics, Not-for Profit Health Facilities, Private Pharmacies and others.

“Also, strategies or ways of reaching out to the sexually active persons in particular, with various contraceptive methods should be devised,’’ he said.

The FP expert said that the use of family planning Apps where nothing else is available to be used in combination with the condoms, spermicides and others should be encouraged.

“Family planning clinics should be re-opened and be treated as essential service, and clients seeking FP be allowed unfettered access and supported,’’ Mutihir said.

Edited By: Vivian Ihechu (NAN)

 

 

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General news

COVID-19: Adamawa Govt. orders fresh lockdown of state  

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Adamawa government has ordered lockdown of the entire state for another period of 14 days with effect from midnight Friday, April 24.

The order was contained in a statement issued by Mr Solomon Kumamgar, Director General, Media and Communication to Gov. Ahmadu Fintiri, on Friday in Yola.

Fintiri said that the lockdown would end midnight of Friday, May 8.

The statement read: “Painful as the decision is, it is the aftermath of the first COVID-19 index case recorded in the state.

“Adamawa government is therefore left with no option than to go for lockdown in the overall interest of saving lives by containing spread.

“Government has successfully commenced contacts tracing and testing which will be followed by isolation and treatment of positive cases,’’ Fintiri said.

Fintiri appealed for the cooperation and understanding of people of the state, insisting that in spite of the looming hardship, there was no alternative to the latest lockdown, as COVID-19, which had no cure, was spreading in the country like a wild fire in the dry season.

He further directed that all movements and gatherings in whatever form, were prohibited throughout the period,

“Except for those on essential duties such as security, media, health and water services, as well as while financial institutions like banks, that will operate skeletal services.

“Others in this category include; pharmaceuticals, and those selling food items only, as government will not allow the irresponsibility of a few to lead to the death of many,” he said.

He called on the residents to embrace the rudiments of basic hygiene like regular hand washing with soap and sanitizers where obtainable, social distancing and use of face masks.

He said the `Executive lockdown order’ would be backed by a mobile court to try and prosecute offenders.

Fintiri said: “We must all act together and willingly give up our personal freedom in exchange for our collective survival from the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The pains we must all endure are only the unintended consequences of government’s commitment to save the lives of every resident,’’ he said.

Edited By: Ifeyinwa Okonkwo (NAN)

 

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Foreign

Roundup: Two Italian companies could put COVID-19 vaccine in human trials in September

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Potential COVID-19 vaccines being developed by two private research laboratories outside of Rome could enter into a testing phase as soon as in September, according to information from the two companies.

Advent-IRBM and Takis Biotech, two biotechnology companies based in Pomezia, a town around 30 km south of Rome, are among a handful of companies towards human testing of a potential vaccine.

Advent-IRBM is set to start advanced studies on its potential vaccine in conjunction with the Jenner Institute, which is part of Oxford University in the United Kingdom. Advent-IRBM has announced it will send samples to the Jenner Institute on Thursday, where it will be developed in part with local funding.

Asked about the Advent-IRBM project on Tuesday, British Health Secretary Matt Hancock said “a vaccine is the best way to defeat the coronavirus,” according to a ministry release. “If this vaccine or another works, the important thing is to immunize as many people as possible in the shortest time possible.”

According to information from the company, research is based on the use of adenovirus, a mild virus that infects chimpanzees, with a genetic modification that carries part of the coronavirus. The hope is that it will create an immune response in humans.

Piero Di Lorenzo, Advent-IRBM’s chief executive, said the testing at Oxford will be aimed at assuring the vaccine is effective and without unintended side effects.

Takis Biotech was among the first companies in Europe to switch its focus to developing a vaccine against the coronavirus. The company issued a press release as early as on Jan. 27, when the disease had not yet been named.

Luigi Aurisicchio, the chief executive and chief science officer for the company, saw the risk for a global outbreak back then.

“We will immediately make available our skills gained for the development of vaccines against cancer and other infectious diseases to fight the spread of this coronavirus,” Aurisicchio stated in that press release.

“Our idea was to create a company quickly, and to focus on this,” Aurisicchio said this week. “Since our technology is versatile, it can be adapted for a virus that mutates like COVID-19 … [and even] for some new diseases that emerge.”

The company has developed five potential vaccine candidates, all based on human DNA. It is now in the process of conducting animal trials after receiving authorization from Italian regulatory bodies. In a statement, the company said all five trials are “extremely positive.”

Takis Biotech said it expects the best candidates to be ready for human testing “sometime in the fall,” the season that starts in September. Advent-IRBM, meanwhile, said the best scenario for its potential vaccine is that it can be ready for human testing in September.
(XINHUA)

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UN chief calls for greater protection for children caught up in COVID-19 crisis

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 In a statement on the new findings, UN Secretary-General António Guterres called for urgent action to support the world’s children amid the universal crisis.

“Thankfully, children have so far been largely spared from the most severe symptoms of the disease. But their lives are being totally upended”, he said.

“I appeal to families everywhere, and leaders at all levels: protect our children.”

The report finds that the socio-economic impact of the pandemic, together with measures to mitigate the spread of the new coronavirus, could potentially be catastrophic for millions of children worldwide.

It details how the crisis is putting young lives at risk in key areas that include education, food, safety and health.

Education on lockdown

Practically all students worldwide are now out of school because of the pandemic.

Nearly 190 countries have imposed school closures, affecting 1.5 billion children and young people.

The report stated that the losses in learning today, and in their future development, are hard to fathom.

“Some schools are offering distance learning, but this is not available to all”, the Secretary-General said, adding that children in countries with slow and expensive Internet services are severely disadvantaged.

Millions missing out on school meals

Child nutrition is another vital concern, according to the report.

The UN chief recalled that even before the pandemic, childhood malnutrition and stunting were at unacceptable levels.

With classrooms shuttered, the nearly 310 million children worldwide who rely on school meals are missing out on this daily dose of nutrition.

Meanwhile, hastily implemented lockdown measures risk disrupting food supply chains and local markets, posing a potentially grave threat to food access.

Safety at home and online

Sixty per cent of all children worldwide are living in countries that have implemented full or partial lockdowns, according to the report.

As the crisis deepens, family stress-levels also are rising, and children confined at home are both victims and witnesses of domestic violence and abuse.

School closures also mean the loss of what the UN chief called “an important early warning mechanism” for incidents.

“There is also a danger that girls will drop out of school, leading to an increase in teenage pregnancies”, he added.

Earlier this week, the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and partners reported that with more children relying on technology for learning and socializing, the risk of online abuse and exploitation is rising.

The Secretary-General underlined the special responsibility social media companies have in ensuring child protection online.

Child health a casualty

Though coronavirus infection rates so far have been “far milder” among children, the report found the broader effects of the crisis on child health are significant.

Hospitals and health facilities overwhelmed with COVID-19 patients are making it difficult for children to access standard care.

Families out of work, or otherwise experiencing reduced incomes, are forced to cut back on essential health and food expenditures, which particularly affects children, women and breastfeeding mothers.

Polio vaccination campaigns have ceased, thus setting back progress in eradicating the disease in its last two strongholds: Afghanistan and Pakistan. Additionally, 23 countries have suspended measles immunization campaigns targeting nearly 80 million children.

“With the global recession gathering pace, there could be hundreds of thousands of additional child deaths in 2020”, the Secretary-General warned.

This scenario would effectively reverse progress made in reducing infant mortality over the past two to three years.

“And this alarming figure does not even take into account services disrupted due to the crisis – it only reflects the current relationship between economies and mortality, so is likely an under-estimate of the impact,” said the report.

Action for children

While the COVID-19 crisis is unprecedented, it is also an opportunity for “unprecedented international solidarity” for children and humanity.

Governments are urged to take steps to counter the unintended effects on children by rolling out or expanding social assistance to families, securing food supply chains and local food markets, and prioritizing the continuity of services such as schooling, nutrition programmes, and maternal and newborn care.

The report further recommends specific protections for the most vulnerable children, such as migrants, refugees, minorities, children with disabilities, and those living in slums.

Standard strategies for physical distancing and lockdowns should be adapted in places such as low-income settings in urban areas, refugee camps and conflict zones.

The report underlined that the UN is working across all settings and stands ready to support countries striving to invest in the world’s youngest generation.

Said the Secretary-General: “With the pandemic placing so many of the world’s children in jeopardy, I reiterate my urgent appeal: let us protect our children and safeguard their well-being.”

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Economy

AGM: ICSAN makes recommendations on CAC guidelines

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The Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators of Nigeria (ICSAN) has made recommendations to help Public Limited Companies (PLCs) manage the guidelines issued by Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) on Annual General Meetings.

Mr Bode Ayeku, President ICSAN made the recommendations in an executive report on Thursday in Lagos.

The report is titled, “How to Manage the Unintended Consequences of the Guidelines issued by the CAC on holding of AGMs of PLCs using proxies”.

Ayeku said the recommendations became necessary to address some of the contentious areas of the CAC Guidelines.

The ICSAN president said it was also to address their effects on the existing provisions of the Companies and Allied Matters Act (CAMA) and the rights of the shareholders.

He detailed guidelines which states that companies can hold their AGMs by taking advantage of S.230 CAMA on the use of proxies; that the approval of the CAC shall be obtained before such a meeting is held; and right of CAC to issue the guidelines as some of the consequences.

“On March 26, 2020, the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) in a bid to assist public companies hold their AGMs as planned in the first half of 2020, issued a circular.

“The Circular demonstrated that CAC identified the restriction on mass gathering of not more than 25 persons as the major problem that would make it difficult for public companies with thousands of shareholders to hold their planned AGMs in the first half of 2020.

“Consequently, CAC took the decision to solve the problem on how to protect the interest of the shareholders unable to attend the AGMs.

“With due respect, CAC has no power under CAMA to issue the Guidelines impliedly altering the provisions of the law on how an AGM should be held; issues to be discussed; rights of shareholders or to compel shareholders to appoint proxies.

“Even if the Guidelines were to be referred to as “Regulations” and issued by the Minister under S.16 of CAMA, such regulations could not have amended the provisions of CAMA,” he said.

The ICSAN President advised companies that had scheduled their AGMs and published their details to postpone until after COVID-19 is brought under control.

For public companies yet to fix a date, he appealed they also wait.

He advises them to wait until a time there was clarity on the level of success achieved in the fight against COVID-19 and there was no restriction on movement in the state where the AGM would be held.

“After all, all companies have an interval of fifteen months between the last AGM held in 2019 and the AGM to be held in 2020,” he said.

He urged government to enact a law on COVID-19 covering various sectors and authorising companies decisions on shareholders participation in company meetings.

“Switzerland adopted the approach when it issued the Ordinance titled “Ordinance on Measures to Combat the Coronavirus COVID-19” of March 13, 2020 for a maximum period of six (6) months,” he said.

For AGMs to be held if provisions of such Ordinance are adopted, Ayeku urged companies to consider using offices for the AGMs, complying with safety directives, instead of booking bigger and expensive venues.

“Also, shareholders should take advantage of the right given to them to ask questions in writing prior to the AGMs by sending such questions to the registered office, at least a week before the meeting, and the Chairman of the Board should try to respond,” he advised.

Edited By: Fela Fashoro/Oluwole Sogunle (NAN)

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Sanction patient, relation that conceal information to health workers- LUTH

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The Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH), Idi-Araba, Lagos, has called for legal framework that prescribe severe penalty against any patient or relation that concealed health status and travel history to caregivers.

Mr Sesan Olajide, Director, LUTH Legal Services, spoke in a statement on Monday in Lagos, following the recent development where a patient brought to the hospital was later found to be Covid-19 positive after his death in the hospital.

Olajide said that healthcare personnel would not be able to give their best when they were apprehensive or not sure of their own safety in the course of their duties.

He said: “It is not debatable that failure to provide correct travel history exposes healthcare personnel to actual harm or risk of harm.

“Therefore, it is being suggested that Covid-19 specific Laws and Regulations should make it mandatory for persons seeking medical care or persons accompanying them to make full disclosure about travels in and out of Nigeria.

“Failure to do so or concealment or misleading information in that regard, should attract severe punishment. Such provision should also be given the necessary publicity.

“Concealing information from healthcare personnel could not only be detrimental to the patient, but may expose caregivers, other patients and the public to risk of harm or actual harm.

“This was seen in the recent cases of patients that presented at the Lagos University Teaching Hospital and University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital whose travel histories were concealed.

“They were later discovered after their deaths that they had recently returned from abroad, a red flag, that could have influenced decisions about their  management.”

According to him, indeed, one can safely posit that the relations of those patients deliberately withheld the information.

“Because, presently, it would be almost impossible to have any case where upon presentation, a crucial part of the clerking session would not be travel history.

“Even, the President had emphasised the importance of not concealing travel history and the Chairman of the Presidential Task Force on Covid-19 reiterates this fact from time to time.

“Concealing travel history in the circumstances that we are would be an irresponsible and dishonest conduct, which unnecessarily exposes hospital staff, other patients and the public to avoidable risk of covid-19 infection.

“Having regard to the serious public health jeopardy that the deliberate concealment of relevant information pertaining to Covid-19 exposure poses, patients /accompanying relations should know that they may be liable to criminal prosecution.

“For example, for reckless act causing harm or for an act which is likely to spread the infection of a disease that is dangerous to life and to civil suit at the instance of affected health personnel.

“One may take the liberty of a cue from some jurisdictions (e.g. many states in the United States) where they have specific laws on HIV transmission and exposure that criminalise a person that is HIV positive exposing another person to the risk of HIV infection through unprotected sex without disclosing his status to the partner.

“Indeed, on this account, charges have been laid for recklessly endangering another person’s life, causing grievous harm, criminal negligence, aggravated assault,” he said.

Olajide said studies had shown that about 75 per cent of workplace assault occurred in the healthcare settings.

“Therefore, in some other jurisdictions, assault against health workers in the course of their duties was given special status and attracts heavier punishment.

“These two examples underscore the fact that special consideration should be given to protecting and re-assuring our healthcare personnel, who the whole nation, as of necessity, must now depend upon,” he said.

Olajide said that one of the key responsibilities of the patient was to provide complete and accurate information about himself.

He said such should include information about self; full name, contact addresses, telephone number, particulars of next-of-kin, past illnesses, present condition, vaccinations, addictions/history of drug use, vitamins, herbal products, drug reactions, allergies, countries resident in and periods.

“Patients should be truthful in communicating with health personnel. This is critical for a firm grasp and understanding of the condition of the patient.

“Apart from clinical presentation, reliance has to be placed on the information provided by the patient or the accompanying relation to enable health personnel to make correct assessment and care
management decisions.

“Often times, some patients conceal information or deliberately
give misleading or wrong answers to questions asked by caregivers.

“This can result in unintended consequences and may affect the diagnosis, prognosis, quality of care and outcome.

“As simple as some of the foregoing seem, they can have serious implications. For example, where a patient resides could have direct bearing on the physician’s
understanding of his ailment.

“Also, when a patient who accessed hospital care in the name of his brother, died (in a situation where anonymity is not indicated), issuance of death certificate would become an issue, given that all hospital records (including that of the referring hospital retained by the brother’s corporate employer) did not bear his real name.

“Strictly speaking, the Death Certificate has to be issued in the name of the person who is still alive,” Olajide said.

Edited By: Angela Okisor/Olagoke Olatoye (NAN)

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