Mixed responses ensued as a Muslim media outlet accused University College Hospital (UCH) Ibadan staff of declining admission to an unwell newborn due to the mother’s decision not to remove her niqab. The incident was captured in a video shared by Muslim News Nigeria.
The footage depicts medical professionals, attired in scrubs, clarifying to the newborn’s parents that entry into the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) necessitates a change into scrubs. This precaution is implemented to prevent infection transmission to newborns. The hospital staff, also in scrubs, emphasized the rule’s importance in safeguarding preterm infants who are highly susceptible to infections.
However, the father of the newborn refused to listen to their explanation and told the staff that they should have told him the rules before he made payment.
The video received mixed reactions after it was shared online.
However, many users told the Muslim Media that the safety of other babies cannot be jeopardised by one mother.
Doctors have now weighed in. They explained that long coverings like the niqab and clothes worn from outside are not allowed into the NICU.
One doctor wrote: “Are you guys serious at all?
“When I worked in the ICU as an intern, I didn’t go into the ICU with my work clothes, there were scrubs and shoes kept for everyone outside, and we changed into them.
“We covered our hair and wore face masks!!!!
“These are children with very low immunity and you want to bring a “hijab” that’s not sanitized into an ICU!!!
“What sort of nonsense mentality is this fgs!!!
A health organisation known as Health Simplex wrote: “The intensive Care Unit is strictly very hygienic because the patients in an ICU, especially ‘New Borns’ are very vulnerable.
“The staff of the ICU are not even allowed to go into the ICU with the clothes they wore from home, why do you think a hijab would be allowed?”