By Stanley Akpunonu
The Nigeria healthcare system is faced with challenges associated with the development of effective responses to solve the healthcare needs of its populace.
Despite the challenges, government is making several efforts and stakeholders to provide quality, affordable, and accessible care so as to achieve Universal Health Coverage (UHC).
As part of efforts to achieve UHC, the Chief Medical Director (CMD), National Orthopaedic Hospital, Igbobi, Lagos, Dr. Mustapha Alimi, has emphasised on the need for a systematic development approach citing that the facility has evolved to tackle the healthcare needs of the country.
The CMD said the hospital through upgrading its infrastructure is reversing the trend of medical tourism and gaining the trust of the public. Alimi said: “We are having more patients who rather stay at home than travel out for several reasons. This is because we can carry out all the procedures here It is cheaper and easier for patient to follow up. We know we are not fully there but definitely we are on our way and we are trying to get there.”
He added: “There are Nigerians that say they can never use the made in Nigeria products, no matter what you do. But those who dare to trust are testifying. All you need do is to come and speak to our patients. They saw our services and trusted us. For some, we are very affordable.”
Alimi said the plethora of accidents that happen in Lagos, for one hospital to say they can handle it is false. “The institutions that participate in the handling of these situations, we are the leader. In terms of capacity, it is our area of core specialization and we are well located to handle it,” he said.
He added: “The hospital is evolving. We have opened our theatre complex and by all standards, and it is ultra modern. With global development of sub specialties, we have specialisations in spine unit, arthroplasty, hip, knee, shoulder and joint replacement. We have arthroscopy, pedantic orthopedics enough to handle diseases and bones disorder in children then the oncology unit where we do the surgery on orthopedic tumors, burns and plastic department is the ones that deal with skin conditions. We have people who are doing breast enhancement and reduction.”
Alimi said the hospital is having constrains of funds but they are trying to do what they can with the limited funds to provide very good services at a least possible cost to Nigerians.