The Lagos State Government has assured that the state-owned health facilities would be redesigned and positioned for proper healthcare delivery as well as to boost medical tourism.
Prof. Akin Abayomi, Lagos state Commissioner for Health, made the disclosure during the 18th AKWAABA Africa Travel and Tourism Market held in Lagos.
Abayomi who spoke on the theme: “Medical Tourism and Lagos: How Lagos is Positioning for Medical Tourism” said that the redesigning process of the health facilities would be done within five years.
“Good medical facilities are designed to reduce the spread of infectious diseases, so all our designs now will have significant low carbon footprint, at least 50 per cent. This redesigning process will boost medical tourism”
“At the long run, people will also be attracted to visit Nigeria for medical tourism purposes. Also, our medical personnel who are leaving will eventually come back when they observe some level of improvement in the sector,” he said.
Abayomi noted that the General Hospital at Ojo and the new Massey Children’s Hospital at Adeniji Adele, Lagos Island, would be completed from 12 to 18 months.
According to him, the Lagos Cardio-Renal Centre at Gbagada is one of the facilities to be redesigned as it will become the hub for the treatment of cardio and renal related diseases, like kidney and heart transplant.
According to him, the Lagos state government had also made plans to address the problem of brain drain and accelerate brain gain through the establishment of the psychiatric hospital and rehabilitation centre in Ketu, Ejirin.
”We have acquired a 15 hectares of land to build a 500-bed psychiatric hospital and 100-bed rehabilitation facility and the construction has commenced,” he said.
The commissioner noted that, to further position the state health care centres for medical tourism, the state was also installing high speed fiber optic cables throughout the state, targeted at strategic infrastructures for hospitals and clinics.
He noted that the major health challenges that allow people to travel out of the country for medical treatment was seen in Orthopedics, Cardiology and Urology.
” Lagos state is trying to address the reason Nigerians travel abroad for medical treatment, we have designed a strategy to reverse this through “Ship” platform.
” Ship means Smart Health Innovation Platform,” he said.
Also, Mr Isa Usman, Director, Turkish Healthcare Travel Council, Abuja Network, said to boost medical tourism in Africa, a sustainable intra-bound and inn-bound medical tourism must be developed across African.
Usman said that African governments must also thrive to create enabling environment for healthcare service providers.
“As Africans, we need to take seriously, the issue of medical negligence, malpractices, medication error and healthcare fraud,” he said.