- As Government Vows To Reposition Health Sector For Medical Tourism
Raymond Ozoji, Awka
The Anambra State Government has expressed its resolve and commitment to revamp as well as reposition its health sector to serve as medical tourism destination for the nation at large.
The state commissioner for health Dr. Vincent Okpala disclosed this to our correspondent in his office at the secretariat complex Awka, the Anambra state capital.
The commissioner who recently assumed office said he was currently touring health facilities in the state and that he had taken note of the state of hospitals and other health facilities stressing that government would adopt a holistic approach in addressing the needs of the facilities.
Okpala stated, “What we want to do ultimately is to adopt a holistic approach to solving these problems. Our goal as a government is to reposition Anambra state as a medical tourist destination. That is our goal.
“We know that about two billion dollars leaves the country every year on medical tourism. So we want to create a health care system where some of these funds leaving the country will come to Anambra state.
“If somebody from Sokoto needs care, he comes to a hospital in Anambra state and receives that care. So we are trying to put that structure down that will accommodate the change we envisage. We will not stop at anything to achieve our goal in the health sector.”
Okpala further noted that government might seek Public-Private-Partnership to achieve its overall objective in the health sector, if it became paramount that government must go into such venture to improve on the state of health facilities across Anambra state.
On the July edition of the first round of National Immunisation Plus Days (NIPDs) aimed at interrupting the circulation as well as eradication of wild polio virus, the commissioner explained that the National Immunisation Plus Days was a strategic plan to administer potent oral polio vaccine together with other routine immunisation antigens on children under 5 years of age.
He said the exercise sought to ensure that all children under 5 years of age in the country received two drops of oral polio vaccine in each NIPDs round noting that the only veritable means to prevent polio virus was through vaccination which he said prompted Anambra State Primary Healthcare Development Agency to collaborate with partner agencies to organize the first round of NIPDs this July.
Okpala, who maintained that all vaccines for the exercise were free and safe, enjoined mothers and caregivers to avail themselves of the opportunity of the national immunisation exercise to innoculate their children against polio and other childhood killer diseases.