EXCLUSIVE: Blackout hits Lagos State University Teaching Hospital, for 35 days, as patients suffer prickly heat
Patients at the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital have been through hell for the past 35 days due to total electricity blackout.
This much was confirmed by the Management of the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital (LASUTH), in Ikeja, Lagos State.
This unwholesome development was attributed to supply disruption from the Independent Power Project (IPP) firm responsible for the supply of electricity to the hospital.
In a press statement released by the Management of the hospital and obtained by EnergyDay on Friday.
According to the Management, it has decided to prioritise power supply from alternative sources(generators) to critical areas.
LASUTH Management said, “For the 5th week running, the Independent Power Project company had not supplied power to LASUTH.
“As a result, the hospital had been running on generators. In order to ensure hitch-free operations of the generators, there have to be shut down times at intervals.
“During these shutdown times, which incidentally had been made as short as possible, some inconvenience is experienced by our patients.
“As responsible hospital Management, we have to keep our services running, hence we must necessarily prioritise supply to critical areas.
“We hope that normalcy will soon be restored but, in the meantime, we appeal to our numerous patients to bear with us,” the statement from the management stated.
EnergyDay gathered that the prolonged power outage which has affected general operations in most of the critical departments of the hospital including the clinic, wards and consulting rooms has forced all the consultants, doctors and nurses to attend to patients under very difficult conditions.
According to a consultant who would not want his name in print, as he was not authorised to speak to press on the matter, the situation was impacting heavily on health service delivery in hospital.
He said, “I can’t use the AC in this small consulting room, because some of the alternative power sources can’t power the electrical appliances.
He stated that “Medical facility and equipment can’t be used without regular power supply.
“If the Government is committed about delivering providing quality care to patients in this hospital something must urgently be done to address the issues.
The Consultant also attributed the outage to the gas to power disagreement between the gas supplier and the managers of the IPP.
He further said, “For the last five weeks, the power interruptions have curtailed essential clinical services at the hospital that serves thousands of Lagosians per day.
The Consultant further noted that LASUTH’s operating theaters, intensive care units, and emergency departments are critical areas that require constant power to treat critically ill patients.
He added that these are areas that matter to the capacity of the hospital to save the lives of patients. He also charged the Lagos State Government to do something urgently about this.
A nurse who also preferred being anonymous, told our correspondent that the prolonged outage has made it impossible for almost of the surgeons and doctors to operate some critical facilities needed to attended to emergency services.
According to her, power from the grid or the IPP is needed to sterilize medical equipment or refrigerate most reagents.
She said, “Some doctors have not been able to operate digital devices because of the power situation. The clinics and the wards are under very tense heat conditions. This is not acceptable and belittling of the mega city standard of Lagos State.”
One, Mrs. Ogunrinde, whose daughter was admitted to one of the wards in the hospital, said that she was forced to buy a popular handheld fan to reduce the heat on her daughter.
According to her, the generator is usually turned off after working for hours. Even when it is on, we used to get instructions not to on any electrical appliance.
She mother who is hoping that her daughter would be discharge soonest after some improvement in her health, told our correspondent that she can’t wait to leave the clinic.
“This place is like hell, I can’t wait to return my daughter back home. The Lagos State Government needs to prioritise health delivery in the state.”
Mr. Olalere Odusote, the Lagos State Commissioner of Energy and Mineral Resources, was not available for comment as at the period of filing this report.
EnergyDay gathered that the CETPower the company in charge of the 8.8 megawatts capacity plant Mainland Power Limited (IPL) under a Public Private Partnership (PPP) with the Lagos State Government.
The IPP is in charge of power supply to the Lagos State Electricity Board, LASUTH/LASUCOM, Area “F” Police Command, Lagos State Work Yard, Lagos High Court and Office of the Chief Judge. Others are Old Secretariat Complex, Local Government Service Commission, Lagos State Urban Renewal Authority CG-Eko LLP, Old Secretariat street lights, Mobolaji Bank-Anthony Way street lights, and other street lights within the corridor.
CET Power was not available to provide further comment on the gas agreement issues with its supplier.