The Minister of FCT, Muhammad Bello, says neurological diseases and other disorders, especially epilepsy, are becoming increasingly common in the country and in most cases patients are stigmatised.
Bello said this at the Annual General Meeting of Nigerian Society of Neurosurgical Sciences with the theme: The tomorrow of Neurosciences in Nigeria,” held on Friday in Abuja.
The minister lamented the misconception of some communities about epilepsy patients, adding that they often times attributed the disease to the supernatural.
The minister, represented by Dr Francis Alu, Director Hospital Management Services, FCT, urged the society to ensure proper enlightenment of Nigerians on the causes of neurological diseases and proper management.
Neurological diseases are diseases that affect the brain, spinal cord and the nerves that control the brain and spinal cord.
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“Many Nigerians are also living with other neurological diseases and disorders such as brain tumours, Parkinson’s disease, stroke and even migraines.
“They also need to be properly educated on the causes, management and possible cure for their ailments.
“Some of these diseases can be prevented by a simple change in lifestyle and even diet,” he noted.
The minister further decried the burden of medical tourism in the country adding that the menace was taking its toll on the Nigerian economy.
He, however, said that the FCT administration was committed to reversing it.
According to him, in the quest to curb the menace, the administration will partner with some private specialist hospitals within FCT.
“We hope to form such partnership with the society for a specialised facility for the management of neurological diseases in FCT.
“In like manner, we desire the establishment of a world-class rehabilitation centre for victims of drug abuse,’’ Bello said.
The minister reiterated that his administration was ready to continue to work with the society toward the general improvement of healthcare delivery in the FCT.