In a pivotal move aimed at addressing the alarming loss of lives attributed to the neglect of gunshot and accident victims, the Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Ag. IGP Kayode Adeolu Egbetokun, Ph.D., NPM, has issued an emphatic call to all medical practitioners in Nigeria to provide swift and compassionate treatment to all such victims, with or without the presence of a police report.
The IGP’s directive is rooted in the comprehensive enforcement of the Compulsory Treatment and Care for Victims of Gunshot Act, enacted in 2017, which imposes a clear mandate on all healthcare providers to prioritize the immediate care and stabilization of patients affected by gunshot wounds or accidents, underscoring the life-saving role that timely medical attention plays.
This decision by the IGP is a direct response to the persistent concerns voiced by concerned citizens and the broader community regarding the tragic outcomes resulting from delays in attending to victims of such incidents.
The Inspector-General accentuates the ethical obligation and duty that medical practitioners bear in upholding the value of human life and delivering vital care to those in dire need.
In his approach to bridging the gap between law enforcement agencies and healthcare providers, the IGP underscores the necessity of an efficient and compassionate response to emergency situations. To that end, the IGP has emphasized the imperative of collaboration between healthcare providers and law enforcement agencies when circumstances require. This cooperation aims at fulfilling the obligation to involve the Police for assessment while medical treatment remains underway, thereby facilitating a more efficient process and curbing crimes.
The Inspector-General calls upon all medical institutions and professionals to fully adhere to these directives and work in unison with law enforcement agencies when necessary.
He highlights the overriding significance of saving lives and fostering a safer and healthier society. The Nigeria Police Force pledges its commitment to collaborating with all relevant Ministries, Departments, and Agencies, with a particular focus on the Federal Ministry of Health, to ensure the comprehensive enforcement of the provisions of the Act.