Most private hospitals in Nigeria are slaughter slabs — Afe Babalola

Founder of Afe Babalola University Ado-Ekiti (ABUAD) Aare Afe Babalola (SAN) has lamented the increasing rate of sub-standard private health institutions in the country, which he said was causing serious damage to the health sector.


The renowned lawyer described most of these private hospitals as “slaughter slabs” where people who sought medical treatment in the facilities ended up losing their lives and cases compounded due to the absence of experts and modern equipment, reports Nigerian Tribune.


Babalola who spoke during the closing ceremony of the 64th National Council on Health in Ado-Ekiti, the Ekiti state capital at the weekend, called on the government and stakeholders in the health sector to come up with stringent measures against the proliferation of private hospitals without equipment.


He urged doctors to seek collaboration among themselves in a bid to establish quality health facilities for people to have access to affordable and effective healthcare in society.


He said, “There is nothing wrong with doctors establishing private hospitals. it is their legitimate right. But I am worried about the state and performance of our private hospitals today. Most of them are not better than mere slaughter slabs.


“My experience in the last two years shows that patients who otherwise would have died were rushed to quality hospitals at the point of death where their lives were saved.


“I therefore suggest that the laws establishing private hospitals should be amended to ensure that they procure quality medical equipment. Doctors should also be advised to come together to form partnerships similar to cooperative societies to enable them to establish quality private medical outfits.”


He called on the council to recommend to the government at all levels the need for an increase in the salaries and allowances of doctors to stop the increasing brain drain in the system.


“I therefore advise this body to recommend salaries and allowance comparable to what is paid in other countries for our doctors.


“Here in ABUAD, when the “Japa” syndrome became so prevalent in Nigeria, we had to top the salaries and emoluments of our staff by 35%, over and above what obtains in public universities. You know what? Everybody is happy, committed to what he is doing,” Babalola said.


On how to ensure discipline in the health profession for optimum service, the elder statesman added, “There should be an amendment to the rules guiding the medical profession in such a way that there would be stiffer penalties for errant members of the profession.”


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