On Tuesday, November 29, 2022, GhanaWeb reported about a clash between the Ashanti Regional Director of the National Service Scheme, Alex Opoku-Mensah, and a nurse at the Manhyia District Hospital in the Ashanti Region.
A furious Mr. Opoku-Mensah is heard in a voice recording of the incident insulting and threatening the nurse over an issue with his daughter, who is a house officer (junior doctor) at the Manhyia Hospital.
The Ashanti Regional NSS boss is heard accusing the nurse of disrespecting his daughter on the phone over an issue that was not made clear in the audio recording.
Following the release of the audio recording, several reports, including social media commentary, claimed that the house officer had issued the incorrect prescription for a child who was admitted to the hospital and was summoned by the nurse to come and ratify the prescription.
But statements issued by the Ghana Registered Nurses and Midwifery Association (GRNMA) and the Junior Doctors’ Association of Ghana set the record contrary to that account.
In a statement dated November 29, 2022, the GRNMA condemned the actions of Mr. Opoku-Mensah while calling for his dismissal within 72 hours.
On the issue of how the incident was generated, the statement by GRNMA averred that the nurse in question had called the house officer on the phone to return to the facility to delete a prescription she made for an adult patient, which was not available in the inventory of the hospital’s dispensary.
According to the statement, the need for the doctor to return to the facility, log on to the hospital’s patient management system, and delete the prescription was to prevent the patient from being billed for unissued drugs.
“In this particular instance, the nurse used her own phone and own call credit to call the said house officer to come to the hospital and log into the E-health system and update the patient’s prescription order so that the patient is not billed for the unissued drugs,” the statement said.
The Junior Doctors’ Association disputed the claims that the doctor had given the wrong prescription in the same story.
“While we do not condone the actions of the father, it is imperative to set the record straight on the falsehood being peddled to bring the professional competence of the doctor into disrepute.
“The doctor did not review any child on the surgical ward on the day in question.
“No prescription was written for a child by the doctor on the said date, and therefore she could not have prescribed a wrong dosage.
“The doctor correctly prescribed intravenous fluid for an adult patient on the surgical ward.
“The non-availability of the intravenous fluid prescribed prompted the nurse to call the doctor to delete it from the system to avoid extra billing,” the Junior Doctors’ Association said in its statement.
As a result, the association urged the public and the media to disregard the false reports about the doctor issuing the wrong prescription.
“The information on social media, radio, and TV stations about an alleged wrong prescription is untrue, according to hospital management and records available.
“We therefore entreat all media houses to pull down their broadcast concerning the alleged wrong prescription of medication and entreat the general public to disregard the allegation against the doctor,” the statement added.
Meanwhile, Mr. Alex Opoku-Mensah has issued a statement apologising for the incident, describing it as not his ‘style.’
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