FG partners private sector to curb medical tourism

By Nzeh Frankwhite

The Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, has announced the determination of the federal government to partner with the private sector in the development of the country’s health sector in order to curb medical tourism.

He stated this during the grand opening and official launch of ultramodern Cardiac Catheterization laboratory and hospital complex, Cardiocare by Limi Hospitals ltd, in Abuja, recently.

Delivering a keynote address, the Minister said: “Nigeria practices a pluralistic health care delivery system aligned with and coordinated by the 3 levels of Government- federal, state and local government.

“Tertiary health facilities sit at the pinnacle of the spectrum, under the auspices of the Federal Ministry of Health and are intended to be the final referral point for health care.
Specialist care, which is often the most inaccessible, is categorised in the spectrum of tertiary care.

“The lack of it, or distrust of its quality in our country, is often the reason citizens seek health care abroad. It has been estimated that Nigeria loses between USD$1 and 2 billion annually in foreign exchange to what has been branded as medical tourism.
“Specialised cardiac care is one of the most highly sought-after specialised health services in the world today.”

Speaking earlier during his welcome address, Group Medical Director of the Limi Hospitals, Dr Iseko Iseko, disclosed that the Cardiocare Hospital has successfully carried out over 70 minimally invasive interventional procedures between set up in February and the official launch in November 2020.

This, he stressed, lends credence to the fact that no one necessarily needs to make a trip out of the country to access highly specialized healthcare.

Also speaking, Dr Awofisoye the Medical Director of Cardiocare Hospital added that the “(Cardiocare) Hospital greatly augments the ability of Nigerians to receive treatment for complex cardiovascular problems without necessarily having to make a journey outside the country, which is often not a realistic option for many Nigerians. Besides, many cardiovascular emergencies come without giving so much time for someone to be flown abroad alive– so this type of home-based solution we offer should be welcomed by all stakeholders.

With the Hospital motto echoing its commitment “to facilitate happiness through great healthcare”, the healthcare solutions provided at the hospital delves deeply into all areas of Cardiovascular and Internal medicine including: Cardiology, Endocrinology & Diabetology, Neurology, Nephrology, Hepatology, Pulmunology, Cardiothoracic Surgery and Critical care medicine.

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