Doctor dies after allegedly working 72 hours in LUTH
By Jennifer S. Kuwanta
A medical doctor at the Lagos University Teaching Hospital, Idi-Araba, has died after he reportedly performed a 72-hour surgery without a break at the neurosurgery unit.
The Association of Resident Doctors disclosed this in a letter dated September 19, addressed to LUTH’s chief medical director.
The doctors in the letter titled ‘’An Appeal By The House Officers Of LUTH’’ accused their senior colleagues of bullying, giving them stressful call hours without breaks, and not providing feeding and good accommodation.
The letter in part reads:
“We the house officers are in deep grief over the loss of our colleague, a co-house officer (Dr Umoh Michael) who died on 17th September, 2023, after having a 72hrs call in the Neurosurgery Unit. He is said to have been on call 72 hours before arriving home on Sunday morning to get set for church service, reaching his worship center (United Evangelical Church) where he slumped in the church at about 11 a.m.
“His roommate attested to the fact that Umoh Michael has barely slept in their apartment over the past week as he was always on call or the day he returns home is around 3 a.m. after surgeries and other activities in the Neurosurgery Unit.”
“The protest letter pointed out that the doctors have long standing challenges since they resumed horsemanship in the hospital and that one of the most striking challenges they face is the bullying they receive from their senior colleagues, stressful call hours without breaks in between, no call food, no good accommodation.”
They demanded that “house officers who did call the previous day, should be allowed either half day the next day or allowed to resume work by midday the following day” and that “house officers should not be made to work 48hrs at stretch.
“The compulsory House check at the beginning of the House job should be free or grossly subsidized for House officers. Our senior colleagues (senior registers and registrars) should make the work environmentally friendly for us; House officers should not do work of potters, nurses or patient relatives” the letter added
The teaching hospital has yet to comment on this development.
Meanwhile, his friends have taken to social media to mourn him.