The Minister of Health Prof. Issac Adewole said the Federal Government will partner with the Akwa Ibom Government to stop Nigerians from seeking medical treatment abroad.
He made this promise on Saturday in Uyo while inspecting facilities at the Akwa Ibom government’s owned Ibom Specialist Hospital.
Prof. Adewole who was on a tour of the Ultra-modern specialist hospital was impressed by the standard of facilities and equipment available.
He noted that with facilities at Ibom Specialist Hospital, medical tourism abroad can be reversed.
“Visiting the hospital complex today is an eye opener, there is no such complex like this anywhere in Nigeria.”
“We will partner to make sure that it works and reverses medical tourism. People from Ghana and Togo can come to Nigeria for medical treatment. “We will start using this facility, with this facility, no Nigerian will be allowed to go abroad for treatment.”
He commended the state government for constructing the Emergency Operation Centre (EOC) at Ikot Ekpene to help reduce the pressure on the University of Uyo Teaching Hospital (UUTH).
Adewole, however, said that individuals could go abroad on their own expenses if they so wish but not on government sponsorship. The minister said that the state owned Diagnostic Centre at Ikot Ekpene would be converted to Lasser Fever Diagnostic Centre.
Before embarking on the tour the minister had earlier paid a courtesy visit to the Governor of the state Mr Udom Emmanuel at Government House. The governor urged the Federal Government to make the state a healthcare tourism destination in Nigeria. Emmanuel said the state government had invested much in the health sector and would like the Federal Government to help boost the patronage of the Ibom Specialist Hospital.