The Minister of Health, Professor Isaac Adewole, has commended Lagos State for its prompt and effective response as well as effective health care management of survivors of the collapsed building on Lagos Island.
Speaking in Lagos when he paid a visit to the victims at the Lagos Island General Hospital, Prof Adewole said: “I’m greatly impressed by the promptness of the emergency response of the state and the efficient health care deployed to ensure that the survivors of the sad incident are stabilised and kept alive.
“I recommend that this proactive system is adopted by all states in the federation to reduce mortality during emergencies,” he said.
He also appreciated the state government for granting free medical care to the victims in order to remove any barriers to prompt, qualitative and comprehensive care needful for the rehabilitation of victims.
Responding, the Commissioner for Health, Dr Jide Idris, thanked the Minister and seized the opportunity to address the issue of the rumour that some of the survivors were being charged for health care. He said he had earlier refuted this allegation based on the clear directive of Governor Akinwunmi Ambode, which was passed on to all government-owned facilities.
He, however, warned that any government official caught extorting any survivor or demanding gratification would be made to face strict disciplinary actions. He said “demanding that survivors who are already traumatised should pay for medical bills is not only unethical but also criminal.
“He called on family members who have evidence of such extortion to contact the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Health, Dr Titilayo Goncalves ,on O8023049478 with authentic proof.
Idris also expressed appreciation to some corporate organisations, particularly MTN Foundation, Shell and other well-meaning individuals who have been donating items and other forms of support for the treatment of the survivors.
Nonetheless, Idris appealed that the donations should be well coordinated and properly channeled for reasons of transparency and accountability.
Earlier, Dr Idris revealed that it was unfortunate and sad that 20 bodies were brought to Lagos state mortuaries from the site. He added that 45 survivors were received and were managed by government health facilities, notably Lagos Island General Hospital, Massey Street Children’s Hospital, Onikan Health Centre., Gbagada General Hospital, LASUTH , National Orthopedic Hospital, Igbobi, and LUTH.
He commiserated with the bereaved families and reiterated the state government’s s continued the commitment to the welfare of its citizens.
As at this morning, he said that 14 people (10 children and 4 adults) were still receiving medical attention at Lagos Island General Hospital for various levels of injuries.
According to the Medical Director of Lagos Island General Hospital, Dr Ismail Ganikale, more survivors would be discharged from the hospital to their families before the close of work today.