Social Responsibility: National Hospital discharges separated conjoin twins

…Minister attributes success to team work

By Hassan Zaggi

As part of its Corporate Social Responsibility, the National Hospital, Abuja, has separated and discharged a conjoined twins.

The hospital took full financial responsibility of the surgery that led to the separation of the conjoined twins from the beginning to end.

Speaking at a media briefing in Abuja, on Tuesday, the Minister of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire, disclosed that “National Hospital took on this case as its assignment and mobilised financial resources for the treatment which was beyond the reach of the family.

“This indicates that the Hospital is alive to social and humanitarian responsibility to make care affordable, but also to support patients with need to access specialised care but limited means.”

He noted that the separation of the conjoined twins was the first successful operation of this type at the hospital and that it marks a bold venture into the realm of advanced surgery.

The twins were delivered at the Federal Medical Centre, Keffi , conjoined face-to-face at the chest and abdomen, and referred to the National Hospital Abuja, 16 months ago.

Dr. Ehanire, noted that the success was recorded as a result of team work by all professionals that participated in the surgery.

He charged all hospitals in Nigeria, “to also aim higher and emulate this team. The government shall continue to invest in people and strengthen institutions and systems, in this case, tertiary hospitals and our healthcare system.”

He further noted that: “In a remarkable operation that followed very detailed planning and preparation, a mixed team of paediatric, plastic and cardiothoracic surgeons, led by Prof. Ameh, performed the operation to separate the twins.

“Twins are conjoined in the womb, when an embryo fails to divide completely during the formation, a condition that can present complex and delicate challenges to teams attempting separation especially when critical internal organs like the liver, heart and intestines are shared or connected.”

Speaking, the Chief Medical Director of National Hospital, Dr Jaf Mommoh, explained that the twins were delivered at the Federal Medical Centre, Keffi, Nassarawa State on Aug. 13, 2018.

He, therefore,, attributed the success of the operation to the hospital’s medical team, adequate funds, as well as the belief and trust the parents of the twins had in the hospital.

The CMD called on state governments to invest more in healthcare which, according to him, would aide in addressing such medical challenges, improve the sector, utilise available manpower, as well as ensure that hospitals had a specific specialisation.

“So, the states need to do more in other to build specialty hospitals or support the existing ones and employ more staff so that we will not be having brain drain.

“They should also provide places for housemanships in their general hospitals so that we will not be having young doctors or health workers roaming the streets for years.”

The CMD reiterated that adequate funding of the health sector would curb medical tourism, as the health institutions in the country would serve the needs of the people and address all medical challenges.

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