Africa: The Unfortunate death of Calabar Electrocution Victim after rejection by South African Hospital
Following His Excellency, Governor Ben Ayade’s approval to take one of the victims of the football viewing centre tragedy, Mr. Ferdinand Anok abroad for further treatment, the Cross River State Ministry of Health contacted a hospital in South Africa (Chris Hani Baragwanath Academic Hospital, Soweto).
The hospital instructed that the state government should make a deposit before they can process a letter of acceptance for Mr. Anok’s visa approval.
The state government duly acceded to the request and deposited the required amount. Shockingly, after the payment had been made the hospital management rejected Mr. Anok saying they do not accept foreigners in their facility. A clear case of xenophobia.
Following this development, the state government communicated with International SOS who in turn linked the government with several specialist hospitals abroad with capacity to manage the degree of burns Mr. Anok suffered and of which hospitals in Dubai, Abu Dhabi and India indicated interest in his management.
Apollo Hospital, India was the first to send in a letter accepting to manage him. Following this the government took Mr. Anok to the Indian embassy to get a visa where three days were spent trying to regularise documents due to the peculiarity of the case.
It was a Herculean task getting him on board the aircraft because of the degree of burns.
It took almost two months for Mr. Anok’s international passport to be returned from the Indian embassy and in between government was in constant communication with them.
By the time the visa was ready his case had deteriorated, despite constant optimal specialist care, including multiple surgeries, debridement, fasciotomy and colostomy in UCTH Calabar and General hospital Calabar.
Doctors were preparing him for fitness to travel before he drifted into a comatose state. Sadly, all attempts to improve his Glasgow Coma Scale proved abortive and he finally passed on.
By: Christian Ita