Professor of Radiology calls for PPP in medical imaging in Nigeria

By Success Damian

Professor Rachael Adeyanju Akinola of Radiology Department of Lagos State University (LASU) has called for Public Private Participation (PPP) in medical imaging in Nigeria.

Akinola took the stance while speaking as the LASU 76th Inaugural Lecturer at the institution’s Main campus in Ojo on Monday.

In a lecture titled ‘My Eyes Have Seen Inside, Out: Scrolling through the Black, the White and the Colour Maze’ she said her department is heavily equipment dependent, forever rapidly evolving and capital intensive.

She said “My department is heavily equipment dependent, forever rapidly evolving and capital intensive. It would be economically, socially and politically apt to put all hands on deck by involving bodies that will financially support the healthcare in that regard, particularly in equipment acquisition and maintenance, training and research grants. The Public Private Participation is a must-do in medical imaging in Nigeria.”

She commended the Lagos State University Vice Chancellor, Prof Olanrewaju Fagbohun for his daunting efforts in seeing that promotion exercises are dutifully carried out as and when due, but added “The custom of disregarding case reports as being contributory to staff elevation in some clinical disciplines during promotion exercises should be given a rethink.” She stressed that in Medical imaging the given staff that academically showcase such case reports should be able to earn accolades.

Radiology is a branch of medicine concerned with the use of radiant energy such as X-rays or radioactive materials in the diagnosis and treatment of diseases. It also deals with visual information; and like any information, this requires interpretation. It is a practical field where medical images are used to make inferences about the state of people’s health.

She said research in the accuracy of medical imaging must draw on techniques from a wide range of disciplines including Physics, Anatomy, Psychology, Computing, Neuroscience and Medicine in an attempt to minimize diagnostic error, thus emphasizing the relevance of collaboration and multidisciplinary approach.

Speaking on what she called Trends in Medical Imaging, Akinola stated “Apart from the fact that newer imaging modalities might be found, there are at least five related trends across all modalities that are shaping the future of medical imaging.” While stating that these trends are closely linked and synergistic, she stressed that none of them was clinically important 25 years ago, but all are now central to the practice of Radiology at the celebration of the 21st.

Akinola also disclosed that Conventional radiography is however the mainstay of medical imaging and is likely to remain so for a long time especially in the emerging healthcare system in developing countries.

Further she maintained that basic research in medical imaging should proceed along two fronts, one is to discover better imaging methods and two to use imaging methods to study problems of fundamental biomedical interest.

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