By Oboh Agbonkhese
Medical experts have called on the Federal Government to increase investments in hospitals to reduce medical tourism.
The Vice Chairman of Garki General Hospital and NHSA premier hospital, Dr. Ibrahim Wada, who made the call in Abuja during a live streaming of an open heart surgery session, said the country has well-trained experts to break boundaries in medical practice, but that finance is lacking.
He said the hospital had carried out 50 successful open heart surgeries since the programme commenced four years ago, and they partner with Nigerians in Diaspora to break the bounds of medical science.
Speaking, a missionary doctor, who is the Chief Perfusion Specialist in Las Vegas, Dr. Ikenna Okoro, said foreign doctors are not better than Nigerian ones, but that the missing link is that people abroad believe more in what they have.
On his part, the Chief Surgeon of Garki Hospital, Dr. Elijah Miner, disclosed that the hospital is also running kidney transplant and IVF programmes, but that they were no longer sustainable because of lack of finance.
He said: “We could have had more surgeries, but most of the patients lack the funds; we need government and donor-organisations to intervene in the programme so that they can continue with it.”
The parent of one of the patients, who had the surgeries, described the operation as a good one, stressing the need for government to enable young doctors to be tutored by experts that come from overseas, so that they would always be on ground to attend to patients.