Medical tourism: We have modern facilities to perform any form of surgery -OAUTH CMD

Highpoints of this news (medical tourism)

  • The hospital and Nigeria now have modern equipment for any surgery. 
  • Open heart surgery,  knee replacement surgery,  and kidney transplant now performed in Nigeria. 
  • Nigerians no longer need to seek medical treatment abroad. 
  • Pleads with the media for publicity .

The Chief Medical Director of Obafemi Awolowo University Teaching Hospital, OAUTH, Ile-Ife, Professor Victor Adetiloye, on Wednesday asserted that there was no reason for any Nigerian to seek medical attention abroad.

He boasted that with the level of modern equipment and numbers of competent personnel on array of medical fields in the hospital, medical tourism in Nigeria should have ordinarily become a thing of the past.

The CMD said for OAUTH to have succeeded in carrying out 70 open-heart surgeries, several renal transplants, Siamese surgeries and kneel replacement, among others, there is satisfactory alternative to western medical deliveries.

The Chief Medical Director of Obafemi Awolowo University Teaching Hospital, OAUTH, Ile-Ife, Professor Victor Adetiloye, on Wednesday asserted that there was no reason for any Nigerian to seek medical attention abroad.

He boasted that with the level of modern equipment and numbers of competent personnel on array of medical fields in the hospital, medical tourism in Nigeria should have ordinarily become a thing of the past.

The CMD said for OAUTH to have succeeded in carrying out 70 open-heart surgeries, several renal transplants, Siamese surgeries and kneel replacement, among others, there is satisfactory alternative to western medical deliveries.

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He made this assertion at a press conference organised at the OAUTH complex, as a follow-up to his inaugural lecture held on Tuesday.

He added that aside the feat attained in open-heart surgeries and renal transplants, the hospital has also scored first in double switch surgeries and pin-hole surgeries across West Africa sub-region, as he attributed the feats to commitment on the part of Federal Government through the Federal Ministry of Health.

He, however, expressed sadness over what he termed ‘inadequate awareness’ in the public on the capacity of the hospital to provide more technical health care and save foreign earnings.

The medical expert maintained that with the level of medical equipment made available at the hospital through the Federal Ministry of Health, coupled with numbers of competent personnel produced through training and retraining by the Federal Government, Nigerians need no medical tourism again.

“I want to plead with you media to give us more publicity to create awareness amongst the general public that there is no more need to go abroad for those ailments hitherto regarded as too technical and complex for Nigerian medical capacity.

“Having carried out about 70 open -health surgeries, several renal transplants, Siamese twins surgeries and double switch surgeries among many others, Nigerians have no reason seeking for medical care abroad again.”

According to Vanguard, Nigerians are among the world’s most prolific medical tourists. Tens of thousands of Nigerians troop abroad every year in search of the best, if not necessarily most affordable, medical treatment and health care services.

Medical tourism is thriving in the United States of America, Europe, the Middle East and Asian countries, particularly India, Thailand, Turkey and other destination countries. This is because of high patronage by Nigerians who expend in excess of US$1 billion every year.

Each year, a significant number of Nigerians travel to India and the UK for treatments ranging from cardiac surgeries, neurosurgeries, cosmetic surgeries, orthopedic surgeries, and renal transplant surgeries. The penchant of Nigerian leaders, past and present, to patronise foreign health institutions is legendary.

The failure of our health system is traceable to thriving foreign medical tourism by prominent Nigerians. It is responsible for the massive neglect and restiveness in the health sector. Nigeria is currently rated by the World Health Organisation (WHO) as the 187th out of 190 countries in the health index. That is unacceptable.

The rapid growth of foreign medical tourism in the country is traceable to poor service delivery, lengthy waiting times and the absence of specialist services, among other flaws. A lot of people are afraid to die unnecessarily because of mis-diagnosis which is so prevalent in Nigeria. Nigeria is not just suffering from brain drain; it is also beset by patient drain.

One of the most telling implications of foreign medical tourism is the incremental loss of confidence in our local health care system. Even though foreign medical tourism is a viable access to health care services that are not available in Nigeria, patients with medical conditions that are treatable in the country often still prefer to be referred abroad for better availability of services.

While medical tourism needs to be better regulated, there is a need for the health system operators to focus more on increasing the quality of services in order to improve public confidence. We need to commit more resources to the health sector and increase efforts at equipment and technology acquisition.

Read original article on Dailypost

  • I am a practicing medical doctor, a philosopher, critical thinker, a globalist, a patriot, SEO expert and a patient blogger.

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