The Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria (MDCN) has found guilty an Adamawa State based medical doctor, Dr. Yakubu Hassan Koji, for allegedly surgically cutting off the kidneys of one Isa Hamma, now deceased, a patient under his care, without informing the patient of the nature of the operation and risks involved.
The Chairman of the Tribunal, Prof Abba Hassan set up by the MDCN declared Koji guilty of all the 12 charges of gross negligence and professional misconduct preferred against him
The tribunal in delivering its judgment held, “The tribunal has no difficulty in resolving the sole issue against the respondent and in favour of the prosecution.
“The prosecution has proved all the counts of all the charges to warrant a conviction of the respondent.
“The respondent engaged in malpractice when he failed to use his considered judgment and sense of honour by acceding to the demand of his patient Isa Hamma, to undergo a surgery on him.
“The respondent exhibited incompetence in the assessment of Isa Hamma, a patient under his care.
“The respondent failed to correctly diagnose the illness of Isa Hamma, a patient under his care.
“The respondent failed to advice Isa Gamma, patient under his care.
“The respondent failed to obtain informed consent of one Isa Hamma, a patient under his care before undertaking a surgical operation on him.
“The respondent undertook a surgical operation in one Isa Hamma, and removed an organ he could not identify.
“The respondent failed to refer in good time when Isa Hamma, a patient under his care when such referral was necessary.
“The respondent failed to do all that he reasonably ought to have done under the circumstances in the treatment of one Isa Hamma, a patient under his care.
“The respondent failed to appropriately communicate with one Isa Hamma, a patient under his care with good regard to his condition.
“The respondent undertook a surgical procedure on one Isa Hamma which resulted to the loss of his kidneys.
“The respondent failed to conduct his medical duty in accordance with standard decorum and by methods adjudged acceptable and appropriate in the generality of the registered member of the Medical profession in the treatment of one Isa Hamma, a patient under his care.
“The respondent failed to pass on the details and history and treatment of one Isa Hamma, to Federal Teaching Hospital Gombe, when he referred the patient to the Federal Teaching Hospital, Gombe.
“The respondent violated laws 29.4d, 29.4a, 29.4g, 29.4h, 29.4i, 31, 33, 33.1, 33.0 and 43.3 of the Code of Medical Ethics in Nigeria in 2008 Edition,” he stated.
The Chairman in his judgment explained that because of the enormity of the professional misconduct, the tribunal is minded to pass the maximum sentence.
His judgment reads: “The name of Dr. Yakubu Hassan Koji, is hereby struck out of the register of the Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria.”
Recall that the doctor performed an operation on the patient without informing him of the risks involved; in the process he ‘mistakenly’ cut off the kidneys in the patient.
Although in earlier arraignment, Koji pleaded not guilty to one or two of the charges, however, in a new twist, the respondent pleaded not guilty to all of the twelve-count charges.
Dr. Yakubu Hassan Koji, practised from 2012 (housemanship) to 2016.
The respondent lawyer, Mr B. E Olowonubi, said, “There are options that are open to any aggrieved person to the decision of the tribunal.
“One option is to abide by the decision of the tribunal. The other option is to appeal the decision of the tribunal to the court of appeal.
“To appeal the decision, the respondent has 28 days to do that by the rules of the tribunal.
“From the area he comes from there is a level of poverty in the area.
He is one of those who have been very helpful to the downtrodden who require medical help, and with reference to this particular incident, you realise that when a medical doctor is performing surgery it is difficult to take notes because the patient came as an emergence.”