Nigeria Inspector-General of Police, Kayode Egbetokun, has directed that all victims of gunshot wounds be treated by a hospital with or without a police report.
The IG authorized doctors to prioritize the health of such persons first, citing that the directive aligns with the full enforcement of the Compulsory Treatment and Care for Victims of Gunshot Act of 2017.
This was disclosed in a statement signed by the police public relations officer, Olumuyiwa Adejobi on Saturday.
According to Adejobi, the IGP has directed that all hospital and clinic facilities adhere to this directive to promote a healthier and safer society.
He further stated that the decision was taken following the incessant complaints filed by the public that most hospitals require that a police report be presented first before a doctor can attend to a victim of gunshot wounds.
“In response to the ongoing concern over the tragic loss of lives due to the neglect of gunshot and accident victims, the Inspector-General of Police, Ag. IGP Kayode Adeolu Egbetokun, PhD, NPM, has issued a resounding call to all medical practitioners in Nigeria to provide prompt and compassionate treatment to all victims of gunshots and accidents, irrespective of the presence or absence of a police report.
“The IGP’s directive aligns with the full enforcement of the Compulsory Treatment and Care for Victims of Gunshot Act of 2017, which mandates that all healthcare providers prioritize the immediate care and stabilization of such patients, recognizing the critical importance of timely medical attention in saving lives,
“The IGP decision comes as a response to the relentless outcry from concerned citizens and the broader community, highlighting the tragic consequences of delays in treating these victims.”
Subsequently, the head of the Nigeria police also stated that the police force is working in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Health as well as other relevant agencies to ensure that the Compulsory Treatment and Care for Victims of Gunshot Act of 2017 is enforced at all tiers of government.
“The Inspector-General calls on all medical institutions and professionals to adhere to these directives and fully cooperate with law enforcement agencies when necessary, emphasizing the paramount importance of saving lives and promoting a safer and healthier society.
The Nigeria Police will collaborate with all relevant Ministries, Departments and Agencies, particularly the Federal Ministry of Health for the full enforcement of the provisions of the Act,” he added.
According to the statement, the 2017 Act mandates that all healthcare providers prioritize the immediate care and stabilization of such patients, recognizing the critical importance of timely medical attention in saving lives.