A heart specialist practicing in Westlake,Ohio, USA, Dr. Demola Abiose, has said that most Nigerian cardiologists and doctors in the Diaspora have yet to come due to lack of facilities.
According to the consultant cardiologist, many of his colleagues are tired of living abroad and want to contribute their skills to the health care system of the country.
He spoke at the inauguration of the Grays Cardiology Centre, Ikeja, a subsidiary of the Reddington HealthCare Group in Lagos on Friday.
Abiose said, “I know at least about 12 top Nigerian cardiologists that want to come back home. Why won’t we? We were trained here and it’s our duty to give back. I also know many American doctors that will come and work here if the right medical facilities are available.
“Though I practise abroad, I could have a heart attack while in Nigeria. If I need to be taken to a functioning cardiac centre, if there is only one and they are occupied what is my fate?
He also called on government to partner private hospitals that have the equipment and work ethic to show its commitment to raising the bar of health care delivery in the country.
The heart failure specialist, however, noted that with the inauguration of the centre in Lagos, he and his colleagues would be coming for medical missions on a rotational basis.
The Minister of State for Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire, said the inauguration of the centre would help to reduce the number of Nigerians travelling for heart surgeries and cardiovascular treatment.
Ehanire urged the Reddington Group to model its operations after some health organisations in India by establishing more centres outside Lagos to increase Nigerians access to cardiovascular services.
He said, “We are proud that services that would have been found only in the top hospitals of technologically advanced countries, can be rendered right here, in the country, without need for passport, visa, airfare or other hurdles and expenses
“ I ask you to consider developing a model in which you can also provide services to indigent patients, subsidised by your paying patients, as your corporate social responsibility.”
The Medical Director of the Centre, Dr. Soe Moe Aung, noted that while the latest technology in cardiology would be deployed to save lives at the centre, the health facility would also deliver services in a cost effective manner.
He said, “Cardiovascular disease is the number one cause of mortality worldwide. We know that its prevalence is on the rise in Nigeria as well and the service for cardiovascular care is in great demand.
“The Reddington group has always been the pioneer in cardiovascular care in Nigeria. The first Cath lab in Nigeria was established at the hospital in 2009. Since then we have been providing diagnosis and treatments in all aspects of cardiology.”
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