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cause problems for the patients and even worsens their condition. It is common to see such visitors eating and chatting loudly not minding the condition of other patients in the hospital. Visitors trooping a public hospital in Kano, have even
converted the hospital to an interactive forum where family issues are discussed.
Daily Trust Health Desk learnt that some of these visitors visit the hospital to partake in food and drinks brought as gifts to the patients. Some of them would not only eat the foods and fruits but also ensure they get part of the money given to patients by other sympathizers.
And the most disturbing part of it as disclosed by a visitor, Jummalo Ubale is that some of these visitors do not even assist the patient when they need their attention. “Sometimes you will hear a patient calling for help but his or her relatives will be busy chatting or eating,” he said.
A caregiver that stayed with her sister in one of such hospitals, Ladidi Ibrahim said the attitude visitors exhibit in hospitals is worrisome, “If they are lucky that their own relative or friend is better, they will disregard other patients that are suffering and would disturb them with useless chats so that sometimes, even if the patients want to sleep they would not be able to because of their noise,” she said. She added that even when she complained to the nurses, the visitors would not stop as they continued with their chat as soon as the nurse leaves, “At a point I was about losing my temper because my sister wanted to sleep after spending sleepless night due to pain but their noises could not allow her and even when I complained to the nurse, they ignored her plea,” she said. Ladidi avers that strict measures should be taken against these kind of visitors that would not care about the condition of the other patients simply because their own patient is much better.
According to her, if they are doing that because they pay for the service, the one being disturbed also paid and deserves the right to peaceful environment. “This practice is more common in private hospitals but I feel even if one is paying for a service, there is the need to observe some decorum so as not to infringe on other people’s rights who have equally paid for the service,” she said.
Explaining the health hazard of frequenting a hospital to see a patient, a pediatrician with Muhammadu Wase Specialist
Hospital, Dr Abdullahi I K said visiting the hospital has become a tradition in our society so much so that if a person is admitted and a close relative or friend fails to visit and wish him quick recovery, it becomes an issue. He said such practice is no longer acceptable in the developed world.
“In the developed world, you don’t just go to the hospital to visit a patient. You visit him when he is at home and the
hospital will not allow any person to stay because of the patient, this is due to the fact that the hospital will give all the care needed,” he said.
He said taking children to the hospital for visits is hazardous because they could easily get infected, adding, “We advise them to stop coming to the hospital with young children because of the fear of infection.” Abdullahi explained measures put in place to check visitors’ excesses in public hospital thus, “We have fixed time for visit in our public hospitals and at every ward, security officer is kept at the gate to ensure visitors abide by the rules.”
According to him the practice is a bit minimal in public hospitals, saying it is worse in private hospitals where people feel they have paid so they should be allowed unrestricted movements. Responding to the question of any best ways to visit patients either traditionally or religion wise, a Muslim preacher, Hajia Khadija Aliyu said there are rules set aside for visiting a sick patient either in the hospital or at home, “It is laid down in Islam that when you visit a sick person, the visit should be very short due to his condition. He should not be bothered with too much talk, and should be given hope of survival,” she explained.
She added that talks about death should be avoided in the presence of the patient and prayers should be recited wishing him quick recovery. According to her, it is not proper that visitors should add to a patient’s pains or worries because such attitude could easily put the person doing it in a similar position or even worse position of ill health.
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- Kunle Emmanuel
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Khapylat Abdkareem Muhammad: Honestly you are right the way and manner they conduct themselves in the hospital in kano state will shock you,they come in with babies and children play around as if it a playing ground. I made one of them reason with me why they shouldn't visit hospital with babies and children she told me even I my house its only God that protect not alone in the hospital.They troop in as if it a party ground...
Idia Kasum Hmmm.....good observations. So, this problem of visitors disturbing patients is not applicable to my place of work alone (Sokoto). Thank God the management of my hospital has taken measure to curtail the menace of relatives visiting the hospital by providing security personnel to the entrance of each ward so as to ensure visitors abide by visiting hours of 4pm -6pm. We nurses in the ward inculcate health talks to the assignment roster in the ward to sensitize patients relatives on the implication of visiting. With these measures put in place visitors have reduced drastically during the morning shift. But, God help that nurse who will try to stop them trouping in, in hundreds during visiting hours. I left the rest to be imagine.
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