Crisis Rocks University of Benin Teaching Hospital

Monday EBALU, Benin City
It was a show of shame at the University of Benin Teaching Hospital (UBTH) as Medical Laboratory Scientists who are currently on strike assaulted and chased out a senior management staff of the UBTH for allegedly trying to implore other staff from a privately owned hospital laboratory to take over the duties and running of the laboratory services at the Hospital.
The Laboratory scientists who resisted the move by management to open the laboratories and as well as offices in the medical laboratory department staged a peaceful protest which lasted several hours, leading to the shutting down of the Accident and Emergency Unit of the Hospital which houses the Laboratory department thereby completely grounding medical services at the tertiary health institution.
It would be recalled that the industrial action is one among the numerous strikes embarked by health workers in the hospital, as the Association of Resident Doctors (ARD), UBTH chapter recently suspended its strike after several weeks of downing tools.
national TRAIL gathered that the aggrieved striking medical Laboratory scientists were protesting over issues of staff welfare among others as the fresh industrial action embarked by the scientists have continued to cause tension between management and the medical lab scientists in the hospital.
However, sources within the hospital told nationalTRAIL that a private arrangement by UBTH management was put in place to run the laboratories which heighten the tension as the striking medical Laboratory scientists vowed to resist the move to temporarily open and run the laboratories by a private firm which they alleged as ‘Union Diagnostic’.
The sources added that Union Diagnostic was catching in on the strike by the Laboratory Scientists to provide alternative services on contract terms following the strike action,” a development that didn’t go do well with the Laboratory Scientists and was resisted, condemned and described as unacceptable.”, the source said.
Workers of Union Diagnostic were barred from gaining access to facilities at the UBTH laboratory and other senior management staff rebuked for working hand in hand with the management of Union Diagnostic, when the hospital laboratory scientists were on strike.
It was gathered that a senior management staff whose identity was simply given as Dr. Obaseki was assaulted by the striking medical Laboratory scientists in the process of trying to broker peace between management and the striking medical Laboratory scientists.
The situation which degenerated to a free for all between the Laboratory Scientists and the senior management staff left other vulnerable staff and patients in the hospital scampering for safety as the protesting Laboratory Scientists became aggressive.
Effort to reach the authorities of the University of Benin Teaching Hospital (UBTH), proved abortive as the Chief Medical Director (CMD) of the University of Benin Teaching Hospital (UBTH), Prof. Michael Ibadin could not be reached as calls put through to him were unanswered as at the time of filing this report.


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