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Year : 2015  |  Volume : 18  |  Issue : 7  |  Page : 20-24

Medical incidents in developing countries: A few case studies from Nigeria

Department of Maxillofacial Surgery, University of Teaching Hospital, Enugu, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
F N Chukwuneke
Department of Maxillofacial Surgery, College of Medicine, University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital, Enugu
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/1119-3077.170821

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The moral worth of a clinician's, action in patients' management depends exclusively on the moral acceptability of the rule of obligation to duty on which the clinician acts. Since every rational being thinks of him or herself as an end, all people must act in such a way that they treat humanity, whether in their own person or in the person of another, always as an end and never simply as a means. A duty of care is, therefore, paramount in the relationship between clinician and patient. While litigation in healthcare system is rapidly increasing globally, which affords individual explanation and compensation for perceived wrong diagnosis and treatment; it is still rudimentary in Nigeria. This default position has made most health care providers indifferent in the presence of gross clinical negligence and medical errors. Though most Nigerians may be aware of their rights to institute legal action in situations such as, negligence with serious harm or death, but, the socioeconomic factors, cultural, and religious notions among other reasons within the society often makes litigation impossible for an individual. Attributing every medical adverse event in the course of treatment as "God's Will" and the saying "It's God's Time" for every death among most African people has also become a great impediment to curbing clinical negligence in our environment. This paper presents a few case studies from author's experience and complaints from patients during clinical practice.

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