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My general hospital experience – Nigerians speak

The health sector in recent times has been criticized for not being able to provide qualitative  and affordable health care for Nigerians. Government owned hospitals have been accused on countless occasions of lagging in the discharge of their duties. Aside unavailability of health care facilities, staff of government owned hospitals (otherwise known as general hospital) have been accused severally of being harsh with patients and at other times, they are abusive and negligent in discharge of their duties. 

Meanwhile, ENCOMIUM Weekly spoke with Nigerians on their general hospitals’ experiences. Here are their revelations…



The only reason why I still use general hospital is because there are experts in different fields to attend to people here. A gynecologist won’t do the job of a dentist here. Aside this, most of the workers in general hospitals are saucy, they lack manners and they are cruel too.

And they lack health care facilities, government should help provide that. There was a day I was at the general hospital in Orile-Agege and four pregnant women were brought in. Only one of the four pregnant women was admitted because they said there was no bed space.

And the only reason they admitted her was because the baby’s leg was out already and it could lead to the woman’s death. There was another woman among the remaining three whose baby’s head was out too but they didn’t take her.

We begged on her behalf, my friend even gave the woman N1,000. Maybe they didn’t want to admit her because she didn’t come with anything. But no, they still asked her people to take her away. Such wickedness. They are there to save people’s lives and not the other way round.



To me, I would say that general hospital is just a place to be in order to worship God because you will see a lot of things. It’s one thing to be sick, it’s another thing to get access to good health care. It’s not as if you can’t get that in the general hospital, but you should be ready to go through a lot of stress.

Most doctors and nurses in general hospitals are reckless, they have this nonchalant attitudes. They just don’t care what happens. The last time my son was sick and I took him to the general hospital, we were asked to do a test for him.

To pay for the test alone, we queued at about three places. When I finally paid for it, they didn’t do the test for the boy, they said it’s past the time they normally register people for test. They did it the following day and I was only able to get the result after about four days.

When I got to the doctor, he didn’t attend to us until a man, one of the patients he had attended to that morning was told to go in immediately they called the next person. He said I should just tip the doctor with N500 that he would attend to me. That was how I got my son treated. We now have to even bribe our way to receive medical attention.



I will tag my experience at the general hospital as bitter sweet. It was when my wife wanted to put to bed earlier this year. The stress was too much at Ifako/Ijaiye general hospital. I had to call my sisters, two of them. We divided the tasks, I was in with her, though I wasn’t allowed into the labour room.

But once the doctor wants me to get any drugs or anything at all, he would give me the prescription, I would hand it over to my elder sister downstairs and quickly go back to my ‘post’. Because if the doctor needed me and he did not find me there, he would leave my wife who was in labor.

So, my elder sister would go to meet our younger sister where she already queued to pay for the drugs. That was how we were doing until my wife gave birth in the evening that day.



I was at the emergency ward of Orile-Agege few weeks back when a woman was brought in. She was in labor but they rejected her because there was no space. I was so shocked because the person that rejected her was a woman like herself. I confronted one of the nurses why they couldn’t attend to her even though she was in pains. She told me they will attend to her on her chair or even on the floor, but they don’t want to get implicated. She said they had done such before, but it is still the patients they are dying for that would still snap and post the pictures on social media. Some of the harsh treatments we get in the hands of health workers are caused by us. We should be partly blamed too, but that won’t erase the poor state of the health sector.



I was at the general hospital in Ikorodu last year for my eye treatment. Though no one treated me badly because I followed all the rules, I queued for a very long time. First, I queued to collect card, then sat for a long period waiting for the doctor to attend to me. While I was waiting for the doctor, a school boy was rushed in bleeding, I think someone stoned him in the eye, they quickly attended to him.

Later, a man was brought in, he was hit by a bike man, he was probably drunk. The nurses started insulting him even before they attended to him. Another patient was brought into the emergency ward, it was a woman. I don’t know what was wrong with her.

The nurses refused to attend to her. When her family started complaining, they insulted them saying they could not kill themselves because someone is sick. It was so sad, these are the people who should make saving lives their priority, but they are busy insulting people. They should be called to order, it’s getting too much.


– Azeezat Kareem




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