Doctors at the Tema General Hospital regularly recommend to patients who visit the facility to conduct their lab tests at private facilities within the area instead of the hospital’s lab.
The situation has rendered laboratory staff, paid by the government, idle as frustration is beginning to set in at the hospital.
Tests run at the in-house labs are outrightly rejected by some doctors who then request that the patients ask for a refund and directed to get their tests done at designated labs, whose names are written mostly at the back of the prescription with the Doctor’s request and name.
Investigations intercepted some of these prescriptions that validate the claims.Over fifteen private laboratories have sprung up around the hospital, with more expected to be set up.
The mother of a patient who narrated her ordeal said the cost of the lab tests outside the hospital was too high, forcing her to take the test at the hospital’s lab against the direction of the doctor.
The price at MDS Lancet was high, the patient came back. and paid at the hospital’s lab which was subsequently rejected and asked to go for a refund.
Upon taking the results back, the doctor refused it, asking her to “take care of her child herself’, if she won’t do as he asked”.
There are many instances where the hospital's lab runs tests and results will be rejected and recommended to the patients to come for their money. And often, the patients come for the money and then go out to do the same tests.
A similar ordeal encountered by a patient who went to lancet recounted that charges was expensive as compared to the Hospital's charges. She then passed the hospital’s lab to ask if the test could be run there and did it. She then took the container to the ward, she was asked to return and if she won’t do it at the prescribed lab she should come for her refund.
The next day the patient was made to run the same test at a private lab. The next day she did the test at lancet. Apparently, staff at the Hospital’s lab assisted her with payment. The development makes it difficult for the laboratory of the hospital to raise money.
The Medical Director of the Hospital Richard Anthony is aware of the situation but has not intervened yet.
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