Fear grips patients and medical workers in ELWA hospital because of a power blackout.
By: Staff Writer
When Joshua Dee took his 66-year-old mother to ELWA hospital, his last hope for care was after he had been turned down by two health facilities, but his hopes were dashed because the hospital had a power black-out.
Dee and family members witnessed his mother – conversing- “seizure” and immediately took her to a nearby clinic, Capitol- by-pass but no doctor was on call.
A stopped at JFK Medical hospital did not work because medical staff told them there was no bed to accept her.
When they reached ELWA, he knew it was a moment of relief, but suddenly, security told him that they could not accept his mother because there was no electricity.
Dee managed to take her to Benson hospital where she is admitted, it is unknown if she will survive as the doctor said her prognosis is poor.
Like Dee, Musu, a patient who was rushed to the hospital at night for excessive bleeding during pregnancy, was dumped outside by a keh-keh rider who feared entering the dark facility.
Her husband said it was about 15 minutes to reach the ward to access nurses as he struggles through the dark hospital, she was also turned down and sought refuge in another facility.
Another patient who asked for anonymity, from Thinker Village said darkness forced her to stay with urine overnight since she couldn’t move out to ease herself.
She noted that whenever it is dark even the nurses get frightened to check on them regularly.
Nurses found in different wards said that they use Chinese lights and phone torches for administering treatment to patients.
The nurses who preferred anonymity for fear of being reprimanded by their bosses said they provide medical services by torches and phone lights.
“We had to postpone many medical examinations because we cannot work without electricity.”
The nurses said nights affect work as supervisors fail to monitor those on duty, which gives room to other staff to abandon work.
Mathias Richards took his brother to the hospital for stomach pain but was turned down due to the same power outage.
Dorbor watched four people pronounced dead on arrival by health practitioners on April 28, 2021.
He said patients’ relatives were hopeful that the electricity will return in time but to no avail, which resulted in their deaths
“Since the facility has running water, and no current, patients purchased water outside the hospital to bath and drink, my worst experience is to see the securities and health workers turning down ill people, who are later pronounced dead.”
“My sister was expected to undergo surgery, but it was postponed and we are still waiting for it to be done,” said Dorbor.
“At the place, no water at the main door to enter and currently as we speak the current is off and on, when we asked they said their generator is down, our only hope is that they fix it to safe our ill relatives, said Loretta.
When we (TSM) visited the hospital two days ago, the current was on and off leaving patients vulnerable to die.
Both the attendants and their patients were deep asleep to catch up with the lost long night’s sleep as they spent the night watching over themselves.
The hospital administrator is yet to respond to inquiries from The Stage Media.
Dr. Rick Sacra, ELWA administrator told our reporter that he was in a meeting and recommended that we speak with Debbie Stanton Sacra’s communication officer, whose phone rang endlessly without an answer.
“I’ll get back to you soon, I’m in a meeting” and later he sent this “Please contact our Communications Director Debbie Sacra.”
Text messages were sent to her similarly to Dr. Sacra.
The Government allocated US$ 15,000 to the facility 2018/2019 budget year it is unknown if the facility is still receiving subsidy since it is not reflected in the national budget.
The ELWA Hospital was founded by SIM in 1965, to serve the medical needs in the community surrounding the ELWA Radio compound in Paynesville, Monrovia, Liberia.
The hospital continued to operate throughout the civil war period and the Ebola epidemic of 2014-2016. In November 2016, the hospital opened a new 42,000-square-foot facility, contributed by Samaritan’s Purse.
According to them, It is a full-service 85-bed health care institution, including a large 18-bed emergency room, three operating rooms, male, female and pediatrics wards, a maternity and postpartum ward, laboratory, imaging department, pharmacy and outpatient clinic.
The ELWA hospital, “Support services include a chaplain’s office, HIV-AIDS counselling and treatment program, and diabetes education program. Also a teaching hospital, ELWA Hospital is training doctors and nurses for Liberia’s health care system.”
This story will be updated when administrators of Eternal Love Winning Africa (ELWA) respond.