The Association of Medical Laboratory Scientists of Nigeria (AMLSN) on Sunday in Makurdi decried the existence of many unequipped laboratories across the country.
This is contained in a communiqué issued at the end of the 194th National Executive Council (NEC) of the Association signed by the National President, Alhaji Toyosi Raheem.
According to the communiqué, the federal, state and local governments should pay adequate attention to medical laboratories so as to reduce the number of clients dying due to wrong diagnosis.
``Most laboratories including government ones are not equipped. They lack structures and staff. It is sad to note that our public laboratories are grossly neglected and under-budgeted for.
``We strongly condemn the situation where quacks are employed as medical laboratory scientists as this affects the effective diagnosis and treatment of our patients nationwide.
``It is this issue of quackery and lack of equipment that causes different laboratories to produce different results for one given test, hence the difficulty in the treatment of such ailment when wrongly diagnosed.
``Under normal circumstances, the result of any given test is supposed to be the same worldwide if all Standard Operative Procedures (SOP) are followed.
``So, government must urgently intervene to save human lives as this is the brain box of medical sciences," the communiqué said.
The document commended union members for professionally fighting the recent emergence and re-emergence of infectious diseases such as Ebola and Lassa fever which claimed several lives in the country.
``We commend our members for their professionalism in fighting the emergence and re-emergence of the Ebola virus and Lassa fever, respectively.
```The fight was won in spite of the gross lack of essential diagnostic equipment and conducive working environment in most laboratories.
``We call on all members not to let down the gauntlet in that regard and press further in detecting early warning signs of diseases towards combating them.’’
The communiqué noted the re-emergence of cases of tuberculosis in the country, adding that the association was doing everything in its power to control the situation.
It appealed to the Federal Ministry of Health and Human Services to allow the AMLSN carry out inspection of laboratories across the country regularly.
It also commended the Federal Government and the Benue State Government for steps taken so far to re-position the health sector for greater efficiency and improved service delivery.
It said the efforts of the Benue government in regaining the accreditation for the School of Nursing and Midwifery and College of Health Technology, Makurdi, were commendable.