A Coalition of Civil Society Groups under the auspices of Empowerment for Unemployed Youth Initiative has urged government at all levels to improve facilities at various health institutions in the country.
National Coordinator of the group, Mr Solomon Adodo, made the call in a statement after an inspection/fact finding visit to the Nnamdi Azikiwe University Teaching Hospital (NAUTH), Anambra.
He called for the assistance of private individuals and organisations in boosting healthcare service delivery in the country and to discourage Nigerians from getting medical treatment abroad.
Adodo said that medical tourism would be discouraged if hospitals in the country were well equipped.
He said the visit to NAUTH had exposed the gaps in healthcare delivery system, which governments, organisations and individuals must step in to fill.
“The Minister of State for Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, was recently quoted to have said Nigeria spends over one billion dollars annually on medical treatment.
“This situation experts believe can be curbed if medical institutions are properly funded,” Adodo quoted the minister as saying.
According to Adodo, support to the health institution will be beneficial to the entire nation if the health and wellbeing of the people is guaranteed.
He particularly commended the Chief Medical Director of the Institution, Prof. Anthony Igwegbe, for prudent management of the limited resources available to the teaching hospital.
“We observed that the hospital has constraints of space both for patients and offices, which is adversely affecting the functioning of the teaching hospital.
“Power supply is also a strong challenge and we call on the Enugu Electricity Distribution Company to give special attention to NAUTH facilities.”
The group commended Gov. Willie Obiano of Anambra for consistently supporting NAUTH, with the donation of 500kva generator and a pledge to construct the road to the hospital’s permanent site.
“We also commend the chairman of Air Peace for donating another 500kva generator and other support he has given.
“We call on the Federal Government to accord accelerated support to NAUTH towards the completion of its permanent site and that the institution be designated as centre of excellence in health research and service delivery,” Adodo said.