25 April 2013

Nigeria: '50 Percent of Nigerian Lab Results Unreliable'

Association of Pathologists of Nigeria (APN) said substandard and fake laboratories around the country are responsible for half of all lab results considered unreliable, leading to wrong diagnosis by physicians and even deaths.

President of APN, Dr Kenneth Iregbu, said interaction with doctors led to the estimates that "50 percent of results sent to the clinicians are of no value to them in the management of patients."

Speaking at a briefing yesterday Iregbu said "the sad aspect is that the country has enough well trained human resources to do excellent jobs but mediocrity, greed, inordinate ambition and ego have stood on the way to progress.

"Many have been harmed and even lost their lives from such unguided requests for laboratory tests," he said.

He said the safest way to approach a clinical laboratory for test is at the request of a doctor (guided investigation), and such result ideally should be screened and interpreted in the context of the patient's problems by the pathologists, who thereafter, gives a meaning to it and finally transmits a report (not test result) to the clinician with all necessary advice.

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