Fred Ezeh, Abuja
Disciplinary Committee of Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria (MDCN) has completed the trail of Dr. Vitalis Nwaikwu, who was accused of professional misconduct and negligence that resulted in the death a child in Lagos.
Dr. Nwaikwu, runs a private medical hospital, Vital Care Specialist Hospital, Lagos. The disciplinary hammer of MDCN came down on him in 2016 when he was alleged to have been involved in a professional misconduct.
MDCN suspended him from medical practice and his licence since then and subjected him to a disciplinary panel of MDCN.
Chairman of the MDCN tribunal, Prof. Abba Waziri Hassan, who pronounced the judgment in Abuja, on Tuesday, based his decision on the fact that the accused had been on suspension since 2016 for offence that attracts six months punishment.
He stepped down the request of the prosecutor for the accused to be deregistered by MDCN and other relevant professional bodies. He advised Dr. Nwaikwu to be more careful next time in his professional duties.
Silvanus Ogbonna, who was the counsel to Dr. Nwaikwu, told journalists that he was satisfied with the judgement but not completely happy because his client had been made to suffer unjustly for three years for alleged offence of six months.
He gave details of what happened: “The patient (late) was brought to my client’s hospital on that fateful day in 2016. Unfortunately, my client was not around to attend to the patient. He dropped an instruction with the next person on what to do, and that instruction was carried out to the latter.
“When it became obvious that the hospital could not handle the case anymore, the matter was immediately referred to a general hospital for additional medical attention. The child eventually passed on at the general hospital.
“The cause of death was not ascertained because neither autopsy nor any examination was not carried out on the child to ascertain the cause of the death. The parents made several allegations against my client. They went to the media and made unsubstantiated allegations.
“Finally, they brought the matter to MDCN investigation panel for their intervention. They completed their work and passed judgement. They considered the fact that the incident happened in 2016, and the accused had been out of medical practice since 2016 for offence that ordinarily should attracts six months suspension from medical practice.”