UNIVERSITY College Hospital (UCH), Ibadan, the Oyo State capital, and its branch of the Medical and Dental Consultants’ Association of Nigeria (MDCAN), have settled the medical bills of 12 indigent patients at the hospital.
The association paid about N400,000.00 to the patients, mostly children tied down in the hospital due to their financial incapability to settle their bills.
The affected patients were in the medical, surgical and psychological departments of the hospital.
The cash donation, which was in collaboration with the hospital management, was part of activities marking MDCAN’s Annual General Meeting (AGM).
The week-long AGM with the theme, “Team building in the health management and leadership in contemporary Nigeria” began Monday and will end on September 30.
Speaking to newsmen, MDCAN’s Chairman, Victor Makanjuola said while the association presented the cash to the patients, the UCH management granted waivers on various fees to the patients, including bed and surgical fees.
Makanjuola, who was accompanied by UCH’s Chairman of Medical Advisory Committee, Dr. Victor Akinmoladun and other executives of MDCAN, visited the patients in their wards.
The union chairman said the beneficiaries were selected after their cases were reviewed and it was discovered that the beneficiaries could not settle their hospital bills.
He added that despite the non-payment of the salaries of the doctors in the last three months, the association’s members were undeterred in showing kind gesture to the needy.
The beneficiaries included a 17-year-old boy, Sanni Akinkunmi Abdullahi in East One Ward, who got N40,000; 17-month-old baby, Afolabi Oluwaseyi and a 22-year-old woman, Esther Olaoye, who was delivered of a boy through surgery.
Makanjuola said: “I must also bring to the notice of the public that we in MDCAN as well as some of our younger colleagues (interns) in UCH have not been paid our allowances and salaries in the past three months. Nevertheless, we have been consistently delivering clinical services.
“This information is important to correct the erroneous belief by the public that doctors always go on strike for money. The non-payment of salaries has also not prevented us, as an association, from being charitable to the underprivileged.”
On the theme of the AGM, the chairman said it was chosen in recognition of the inter-professional rivalry in the Health sector, its attendant negative effects on service delivery and health-related indices.