The Nigerian Medical Association’s (NMA) Lagos chapter has released the shocking results of its investigation into the tragic demise of Vwaere Diaso, a medical doctor undergoing her housemanship at General Hospital, Lagos Island. The panel’s findings reveal that the elevator responsible for her death was grossly unfit for use.
In response to the unfortunate incident, the NMA had formed an 11-member panel consisting of doctors, lawyers, and engineers. Chaired by Saheed Babajide, the independent committee delved into the circumstances surrounding Diaso’s untimely passing.
Tragedy struck when the ill-fated elevator plummeted from the 10th floor of the building with Diaso onboard, resulting in severe injuries that ultimately proved fatal during her hospitalization.
In its published report, the panel asserted that the lift system implicated in the accident “should not have been put to use to avoid endangering lives.” This damning conclusion was drawn after evaluating the accounts of two house officers who attested that the two lift systems in the building had not been operating satisfactorily for a considerable period.
One glaring observation highlighted by the report was the absence of a verifiable maintenance structure or mechanism for the lift installed at the hospital. This glaring oversight contributed to the unfortunate event.
Moreover, the report underscored the delays in rescuing the injured doctor after the accident, with an estimated hour spent inside the car. It concluded that professional standards were not upheld in the provision of the lift system, exposing a dire need for improvement in such installations.
Following these disheartening revelations, the panel put forth a series of recommendations aimed at preventing future mishaps. It proposed engaging qualified professionals for the design, supervision, and installation of public assets, particularly in line with Lagos State Safety Commission standards. The report also called for routine maintenance and certification of hospital assets by competent professionals, bypassing needless bureaucracy.
To ensure a safer working environment, the panel urged comprehensive training for equipment operators, emphasizing safety protocols and emergency response. Regular safety drills for all staff were also deemed essential.
In a bid to hold responsible parties accountable, the panel demanded a thorough investigation of all stakeholders and contractors involved, advocating for the prosecution of anyone found culpable.
In a touching gesture to honor Diaso’s memory, the panel recommended naming the house officers’ quarters at General Hospital Odan, Lagos Island, after the deceased doctor, seeking to immortalize her contribution to the medical community.