…13 facilities shut down over various violations
By Ike Uchechukwu, CALABAR
A medical Doctor and CEO of Life First Medical Centre, Dr. Austin Adugba has been arrested by the Nigeria Police in collaboration with Cross River state Taskforce on quackery and related violation in the healthcare delivery system of the state.
Briefing newsmen in Calabar at the Ernest Etim Bassey Press Centre on Tuesday, Chairman of the Taskforce, Dr David Ushie disclosed that 6 persons including Dr Adugba conspired to carry out the fake surgeries on nine persons out of the 10 patients that were found in the facilities visited by the team.
Dr Ushie also revealed that Dr Adugba has allegedly been recruiting quacks in his facility ( Life first ) and mobilizing them to carry out all sorts of illicit activities In rural communities and defrauding unsuspecting members of such localities.
“This briefing is about fake doctors operating in Aladim Community of Ogoja Local government area, it’s about the sad incident that we received a tip off concerning some wonder surgeons in the community.
“My team and I left Calabar by 12:30 AM of Sept 8, 2022 to ensure the offenders did not escape as they usually did.
“As we arrived in the wee hours , we immediately contacted the Chairman of Council, Hon Emmanuel Ishabor and the DPO of Ceja Area command. Supol Horsfall, who both confirmed the incidence.
“Our investigations took us to Health Center Aladim, venue of the crime. After a full day interview and facility assessment, we made the following discoveries.
” There were ten (10) patients on admission. Nine (9) of the ten patients had eleven (11) ‘surgeries’.
” Amongst the 9,3 patients had four (4) ‘surgeries’ for ‘hernia’ ,the majority of the seven (7) had ‘surgeries’ for ‘appendectomies, one patient had two surgeries’ for ‘appendix’ (1) and ‘hernia’ (1).
” At least 5 of the 11 surgeries were clearly recognizable as superficial skin cuts giving patients the false sense that they had surgery (-ies).
Speaking further, Dr Ushie revealed that Adugba a medical practitioner who hails from Benue state was arrested alongside three others who have been working with him.
Vanguard learned that three others arrested alongside the fake medical practitioner aided him in ripping off unsuspecting rural dwellers by performing fake surgeries on them and not only duping them but also endangering their lives.
The Taskforce Chairman also disclosed that before the incident his team had responded to 22 cases and arrested violators and closed down 13 healthcare facilities on account of various violations of the regulatory laws.