…As Sanusi bemoans medical tourism national embarrassment
The Nigerian National Petroleum Cooperation (NNPC) has donated tissue typing and cross match laboratory equipment worth N230 million to Aminu Kano Teaching Hospital (AKTH) Kano, for improved transplant.
Group Managing Director of the company Mele Kolo Kyari who was represented by one of the company’s directors Alh Abba Abubakar Nuhu said the project came through a request by the management of AKTH for the procurement of the equipment to enable them to grow and alleviate the suffering of many kidneys and other chronic patients that require transplant.
“The installed equipment or reagents we are commissioning today is the first of its kind in the entire region. Before this, the hospital sends samples of patients and their relatives to the United Kingdom, paying a lot of money to do these tests but this arrangement came to an end when Ebola devastated some West African countries, whence UK government banned the entrance of biological specimen into the bits of its country.
“Specimens now have to be sent to India and Egypt with attendant delays and inconveniences. Commissioning of this project will, therefore, put an end to all the time-consuming process and inconveniences” GMD declared.
Following the review and recomendation of the request by our professionals as well as issuance of certificate of No objection by BPP, the request was approved as part of NNPC’s Corporate Social Responsibility.”
In his address, the Chief Medical Director of the hospital, Prof Abba Sheshe, commended the management of the NNPC for this kind gesture which he said will help in transforming the health sector of the country and reduce health tourism in Nigeria.
“The renal transplant program has initially started through aid and collaboration. This has since been indigenized. A total of 57 successful transplants of the kidney were done by our team of specialists without any foreign or external assistance.
“This is the highest number of renal transplants in any public health institution in Nigeria. We indeed are proud of these achievements, we are indeed proud of these transplant team” the Director stated.
He also said the AKTH has received referrals on cases related to the kidney from within and outside Nigeria such that it had treated 465,498 in 2019 alone.
In his speech, the Emir of Kano,Malam Muhammad Sanusi 11,noted that, “It is evident to me that the problems we have in this country have less to do with manpower and capacity of the academics, but have got to do with very little financial investments that is required in order to get first class healthcare.
“Even from the perspective of national pride, it will seem to me a major national embarrassment that Nigerians have to go to Egypt and to Libya and to Dubai for treatment not because we don’t have the doctors here with the capacity but because we have not invested enough in the facilities required.
“Nigeria has the highest burden of sickle cell anaemia, children are dying needlessly and when you consider that for every one Nigerian, and they are many, for every one Nigerian who goes to Egypt and India and Dubai, we are able to calculate the amount of foreign exchange that is lost.
” what we do not calculate and what we do not realise is that for every one Nigerian who is able to go there, there are thousands who have died in Nigeria because he cannot go there.
“So the foreign exchange cost that we count is nothing, it’s nothing if we are to put a value on those who die in its thousands, you can’t even compare to the amount of money you spend to save those who survive.
Sanusi, however, called on wealthy individuals and nongovernmental organizations to key in what NNPC has done to free millions of poverty streaking family, who are suffering from kidney and other chronic diseases.