The regional hospital of Bafoussam is under fire from critics as its director took a measure deemed discriminatory by his superiors and denounced by users.
The circular letter from the director of the regional hospital of Bafoussam in the western region, published on October 26, 2022, raised a wind of protest at the national level.
He wrote to the attention of all staff, managers, and supervisors, among others:
“From the date of signature of this note, any patient entering the hospital must deposit a deposit of 50,000 F (Fifty thousand francs) for his care; failing this, he will not be admitted to the hospital.”
He recalls that any staff who takes care of a patient without the latter depositing his deposit beforehand will be obliged to pay the bills of the latter.
Supervisors, Majors, Team Leaders and Assimilated are called upon to ensure the strict application of these measures.
After the publication of this note on social networks, reactions then multiplied to denounce serious violations of the rights of patients. Faced with the wave of protest observed, the Minister of Public Health reacted, he wrote:
Further to your circular letter in which you indicate that from the date of its signature, the deposit of a deposit will henceforth condition the admission of any patient to the Hospital, I have the honor to point out to you that in accordance with the policy of humanization of care prescribed by the President of the Republic, the access of all Cameroonians to a health facility should not be conditioned by any discriminatory approach, likely to flout the right to health, considered as a right basic human. Moreover, this approach on your part, which does not seem to be part of a legal anchoring of the management of health facilities, could jeopardize the efforts made in terms of continuous improvement of the supply of care and services.
Also, in order to remain in compliance with the regulations, I urge you to please report the disputed circular letter and report within 24 hours.
the NGO Mandela Center denounces serious violations of health rights and challenges the authorities and recalls:
That the State of Cameroon, through its health structures, including the Regional Hospital of Bafoussam, has the main obligation to protect and promote human rights, which obligations are defined and guaranteed by customary international law (the general practice of States accepted as de jure and engendered by a sense of legal obligation) and international human rights treaties, creating binding obligations for the State of Cameroon which has ratified them to give effect to these rights.
A real outcry pushed the director of this hospital training to change his mind and also raises the problem of the management of indigent patients in public hospitals in Cameroon.