Sangwe Clovis (The Rural Doctor), a medical doctor in Cameroon says health care providers in the country may soon be afraid to diagnose COVID-19 for fear of being beaten up.
Last week a doctor in Douala, Littoral Region of Cameroon was nearly killed by furious kids of a deceased patient.
Reports say the patient in question is a lady from the South West Region who was diagnosed of the coronavirus and later on died in a hospital in Douala.
The deceased woman’s children beat up the doctor and accused him of falsely diagnosing their mother of the coronavirus.
“To make a proper diagnoses, one needs to first use clinical judgement using approved case diagnoses for COVID-19. If symptoms and contact history suggest COVID-19, a diagnosis of “suspected COVID-19” is made. Samples are then collected and testing done to confirm or refute the diagnosis. Important to note that in clinical practice, all “Suspected Cases” are treated as Positive Cases until proven otherwise by a negative test result,” Dr. Sangwe Clovis says.
“What if the result takes days to be released? What if results return negative long after the patient had died and was buried like a COVID-19 patient? The family will blame the Doctor for misdiagnosis. The family of the deceased will beat up the doctor, yes?”, he adds.
“What if days later the results turns out positive long after the patient died and corpse given to the family to be buried like a negative case? The Doctor will be blamed for poor judgement and for being responsible for contamination of the family of the bereaved and friends. So the Doctor will be beaten to a pulp, yes?”
Cameroon has recorded 2,104 coronavirus cases and 64 deaths.