A young man about 22 years was rushed to the emergency department after falling unconscious. He was a driver’s mate (bus attendant). He was brought in by one of the drivers at the bus station he works at.
Upon arrival, the driver was only able to mention the patient’s nickname but not his real name. He did not know his age, he had no idea where he stayed, he couldn’t tell us about any relatives or next of Kin we could contact us and he certainly had no information regarding his medical history.
When asked how he didn’t know anything he said; the boy has been at the station for over 5 years. He works with a lot of drivers as a driver’s mate. They only know about a relative of his who comes around to look for him once in a while but they do not have his number. According to the driver, patient was fine in the morning but fell to the ground suddenly and didn’t wake up so they brought him. His BP was very high over 200/140mmHg.
Sadly the young man died later that night. From cardiac (heart complications ).
After his death the station master came around. He said the boy drank a lot of alcohol, and he would even cause disturbances at the station sometimes.
Now getting the news of the death to the boy’s relatives was a problem because no one knew them. The body was sent to the morgue without any family member’s knowledge.
What’s the gap? There is an absence of personnel personal record keeping system in the informal sectors like the transport stations. Unlike the formal sectors and institutions where key information is collected and kept on record, these informal places of work have none, which makes it dangerous in times of emergencies like this one.
Example; Station masters should have the personal emergency information of all the people under him. The drivers, mates, etc.
Type of information needed for the emergency personal information records.
1.Name ( Name on ID card) :It is very necessary for people’s real names to be kep on record. This is because most people tend to call their fellow workers by their nicknames which most times replace their real names. And in times of emergencies, their real names are not known. Patients get abandoned unintentionally all the time by their relatives and friends because the names they are admitted with are often times different from what is on record.
2. Age : A person’s age tells a lot about them which is more so medically.
3. Place of residence: Where the people live.
4. Next of Kin: Knowing who to call in time of emergency is very vital especially in this age where money is needed to get most things done at the hospital. Also in cases where blood transfusion is needed, having someone to call can be all that is needed to save a life.
These four pieces of personal information should be collected and kept for time of emergency. It can be life saving.
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