The federal medical centre in Umuahia has suspended the admission of new patients following the five-day warning strike by the Nigeria Medical Association (NMA).
The Head of the Nursing Services Department, Mrs Lovina Okoro, told Newsmen that only emergency and accident cases were being admitted into the wards.
Okoro said that if there was any emergency case, it was usually handled by the Emergency/Accident Unit.
“For now, we are taking care of the patients in the wards,” she said.
She said that the impact of the strike would be felt after three days when the doctors’ prescriptions must have been exhausted.
Okoro explained that no patient on admission had been discharged as a result of the strike.
She said the hospital management mandated nurses to take over the provision of medical services in the hospital until the action was over on Monday.
A doctor at the Emergency/Accident Unit said on the condition of anonymity that he was part of the strike but was only attending to emergency and accident cases.
“We are doing this in line with the humanitarian nature of our profession to attend to emergency and accident victims.
“Our duty is to save lives, so we do not send sick people away.
“We do not send them to the wards for admission unless we have a critical situation,” he said.
Some of the patients who spoke on the strike appealed to the doctors to suspend the action in the interest of the patients.
“I appeal to the doctors to call off the strike because they are trained to save lives”, a patient said.