Covid-19 Pandemic: Diagnostic Errors, Inadequate Healthcare Facilities and the Improvement of Patient Safety in Nigeria

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Department of Private and Property Law, Faculty of Law, University of Ibadan, Nigeria.

2 Professor of Private and Property Law, Faculty of Law, University of Ibadan, Nigeria.


Patient safety is essential to healthcare quality. Its deficiencies impact health outcomes, quality of life, healthcare effectiveness and efficiency. Its improvement should be a priority for any country particularly developing countries like Nigeria. However, the emergence of “Covid-19”, the inadequacy of healthcare facilities and the prevalence of diagnostic errors have complicated efforts to improve patient safety in Nigeria.
Materials and Methods:
This research adopts a qualitative research approach, specifically text analysis, to review the literature on the subject. A review of the literature revealed a number of diagnostic issues which threaten patient safety. Existing literature on misdiagnosis, inaccurate, delayed, missed, and remote diagnosis, as well as the relationship between the adequacy of healthcare facilities and the advancement of patient safety, was reviewed and analyzed.
This paper finds that Patient safety cannot be guaranteed in the absence of an accurate diagnosis, access to secure infrastructure, appropriate technologies and medical devices, as well as a qualified and dedicated health workforce, among other factors. Early detection of diseases in general, and Covid-19 in particular, improves patient safety and lowers mortality rates. Inadequate healthcare facilities, diagnostic equipment, diagnostic errors, and disease information, on the other hand, make early detection difficult and have a negative impact on patient safety.
There is a need for early and accurate diagnosis of Covid-19 and this can only be achieved with adequate healthcare facilities including diagnostic equipment and laboratories. As a result, there will be fewer diagnostic errors, more effective patient management and treatment, and, ultimately, improved patient safety.


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