Police report: Minister accuses hospitals of flouting Nigerian law on gunshot victims

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The Minister of Health and Social Welfare, Prof. Muhammad Pate, has expressed concern over non-compliance with provisions of the Compulsory Treatment and Care for Victims of Gunshot Act, 2017, in most medical facilities.

The minister pointed out that victims of gunshot come under medical emergencies that require urgent attention to save the life of the patient or victim.

The Compulsory Treatment and Care for Victims of Gunshot Act, 2017 signed into law by former President Muhammadu Buhari.

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The Act stipulates that every hospital in the country, whether public or private, shall accept or receive for immediate and adequate treatment with or without police clearance…

However, a statement signed by the Director of Information, Federal Ministry of Health and Social Welfare, Patricia Deworitshe, on Tuesday noted that in recent times, the society has witnessed a rise in the loss of lives as a result of the refusal of some health facilities to attend to gunshot victims who do not present police reports.

“Gunshot victims come under medical emergencies that require urgent attention to save the life of the patient or victim. It has come to the knowledge of the Federal Ministry of Health and Social Welfare, of the slow or non-compliance by most medical facilities going contrary to the Gunshot Act 2017 which mandates all medical facilities to provide for the compulsory treatment and care for victims of gunshots; and related matters.

“In line with this mandate, the Federal Ministry of Health and Social Welfare is concerned about the spate of gunshot incidences and the refusal of some of the health facilities to administer treatment and care for the victim or patient without a police report.

“The Coordinating Minister of Health and Social Welfare, Prof. Pate, therefore calls on all medical practitioners to comply with this national law by providing prompt treatment and care for these victims to prevent death while, strategies are being put in place by the Ministry to ensure compliance to the Act by Nigerian healthcare facilities,” the statement noted.

The minister also urged the Police to comply with and enforce the provisions of the Act with promptness.

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