Nigeria may soon be saving billions of dollars annually from foreign health tourism which has almost become a norm among the elites who would hurriedly catch the next flight abroad, at the slightest manifestation of the commonest of ailments.
Chieftain of the All Progressives Congress and erstwhile National Publicity Secretary of the defunct New People’s Democratic Party, (nPDP), Chief Eze Chukwuemeka Eze said with the National Universities Commission NUC accreditation of the 197th University, adjudged by analysts to be the blue chip in serenity amongst other institutions, situated in Uburu, Ebonyi State and built by the adminstration of Engr. David Nweze Umahi, Chairman, South/East Governors Forum and Executive Governor of Ebonyi State, Nigeria is gradually turning into an emerging hub for medical health tourism.
Marked for official takeoff, September, 2021, Chief Eze Chukwuemeka Eze who toured the new ivory tower on his first day of projects monitoring in Ebonyi State on an official invitation by the workaholic and enigmatic Commissioner of Information, Barr. Uchendu Orji, to assess the wind of magical feats achieved by Governor Umahi this past six years as the Governor of the State, said the king David Medical University, is built to taste and is simply the best of its kind in all respects in the entire African region.
In his first treatise on the project which he titled, “Umahi Set to End Foreign Health Tourism, Redoubles Efforts to Unveil World Class Medical Centre as Eze Embarks On Seven Days Projects Tour of Gale of Projects in Ebonyi State (PART ONE)”, exposed to the world the vision of Governor Umahi to end foreign Health Tourism by initiating a world class Medical Centre with 24 hours power supply generated from solar, generator and national grid. “the Medical College after completion, will have centres of excellence in cancer management, kidney transplant with dialysis centre, liver transplant, and other diseases. It will have the latest diagnostic equipment that can be rated amongst the best anywhere in the world. The technology to be employed is equally second to none.
The centre will be manned by the best hands anywhere in the world and the structures are classical”. The diagnostic equipment are coming directly from the manufacturers and almost all of them are ready. It’s going to be a centre of medical tourism, he emphasised.
With the approval by the National Universities Commission and appointment of an erudite, outstanding Scholar and seasoned Administrator, Professor Chigozie Jesse Uneke, as the Acting Vice Chancellor of the University, history can be said to have been made in the annals of provision of qualitative health care in Africa.
The smooth take off and effective management of King David Medical Science University, Uburu, Ohaozara LGA, by His Excellency, the Governor of Ebonyi State, Engr. Chief David Nweze Umahi, FNSE, FNATE, it can be concluded that Nigerians will soon have the best Medical Centre in Africa.
Designed as an ultra-modern 21st century state-of-the-art International Medical University, Chief Eze said the King David University of Medical Sciences is masterfully crafted for specialized manpower development in the most serene environment in virtually all branches of medical specialties and will hinge on the highest form of professionalism in the field of medicine and related fields while consistently aligning with the norms and guidelines of the Nigerian National Health Policy (NHP) and Strategy which is chiefly aimed at achieving quality health for Nigerians.
The urgency of the need to address the dearth of human resources for health care services in line with the realities of the time and being in relative position with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), as pertains to health, must have informed the decision of Umahi to embark on this project.
With a vision “to achieve the highest form of quality manpower development for healthcare and other service delivery for all persons irrespective of gender, race, religion, and socio-economic status” the University has its mission statement thus:
“the mission of the University is to serve mankind with the highest form of professionalism, ethics and excellence by training highly qualified health professionals who will work to improve health conditions, alleviate sickness, suffering and pain through the provision of high quality, efficient, cost-effective and integrated healthcare with compassion and treatment.”
The University, a brainchild of Gov. Dave Umahi, is a creation of the law of Ebonyi State, duly passed by the State House of Assembly and accented to by the Governor and thus enjoys the status of public institution for the provision and advancement of health care services in Nigerian and around Africa.
Courses accredited to be offered at the University include; Medicine & Surgery, Nursing, Medical Laboratory Science, Pharmacy, Physiotherapy, Health Policy & Health Systems, Hospital Administration, Dentistry, Optometry, Human Anatomy, Physiology, Biochemistry, Microbiology/Parasitology, Biomedical Engineering, Public Health, Human Nutrition/Dietetics, Radiography/Radiation Sciences, Traditional, Complementary and Integrative Medicine. Others are-Industrial Physics/Astronomy, Industrial Mathematics/Statistics, Industrial Chemistry, Applied Biology/Biotechnology and Computer Science.
The University Teaching Hospital has among others, the following units:-Maternal & Child Care Centre which will undertake all aspects of maternal and child health care including women health, pregnancy, nursing mothers, children healthcare etc; Cancer Treatment/Oncology Centre, to undertake all aspects of cancer/oncology treatments; Eye Care Centre, to tackle all aspects of eye care in all specialties; Dialysis Centre, that will focus on renal management and treatment including dialysis;
Laboratory Unit: This unit will cover the four key areas of laboratory services including medical microbiology, haematology/immunology, chemical pathology and histopathology; Radiology Unit to handle radiology services; Operating Theatres & Suits, for all aspects of surgical services; Kidney & Liver Transplantation Unit,for kidney and liver transplantation and care.
Others are:- Dialyzer Production Plant: For the production of dialyzers and other consumables used for dialysis centre; Oxygen Production Plant, Virology & Quarantine unit, Dental Services Unit, Pharmacy Unit, Accident & Emergency Unit, Physiotherapy Unit, Health Information Management Equipment & Systems Unit, Mortuary Unit with a chapel for funeral services, Central Sterilizing Supply Department (CSSD),Workshop/Maintenance Unit, environment, Catering/Kitchen Unit, Waste Management Unit and an Administration Unit.
Commending Gov. Umahi for giving a thought to the development of public health institution and addressing the menace of medical tourism and overseas studies, Chief Eze appealed to medical tourists within and outside Nigeria to take advantage of the ultra-modern facilities and expertise domiciled in the hospital for sound and efficient diagnosis and treatment of sophisticated health challenges.
The party Chief called on those nursing a future in the medical line to think the way of King David University of Medical Sciences for training and experience, stressing that the institution addresses the dearth of a modern curriculum, professional training, research and development and hands-on-equipment in some Nigerian higher institutions.