Juliana Taiwo-Obalonye, Abuja
Dwindling resources leading to a lean budgetary allocation has forced the State House Clinic to announce plans to scale down the number of persons authorised to access medical attention at the Asokoro facility in Abuja.
The Permanent Secretary, State House, Tijjani Umar, made this disclosure at the opening of a two-day workshop on service improvement in the hospital.
The clinic was specifically established to provide health care services to the President and Vice President, members of their families as well as members of staff working in the Presidential Villa.
The clinic currently cateres to about 32,000 patients which the authorities said “is not sustainable.”
Umar said “hangers-on” will be eliminated while services will only be extended to those who are officially entitled to access the health care facility.
According to him, a renewed zeal to enforce this became necessary after a meeting of stakeholders to bring back the clinic to it’s original status of efficient service to those who are entitled to access the facility.
Umar said, “We are going to trim down the number of unentitled people. Unentitled bringing constraints to us, bringing issues, that’s all. If you have give children in your house neighbours send like 20 every evening to come, your pot will not be enough. That’s what we are saying.
He said “this will assist us to look at those areas requiring improvement,” adding that “the biggest room in the world is the room for improvement.”
“First and foremost, we are talking about service provision. Service provision cuts across all facets of services. Services by human beings, meaning doctors, other medical staff, services through the provision of equipment and facilities.
“We are going to do everything we can to ensure that we stay up fine and in top shape serving our patients. So, it’s like an across the board kind of improvement that I am talking about.”
“It simply means that the lean resources of today might not allow us to achieve our aim. Only through that, and therefore we need partnerships, we need relationships.
The Permanent Secretary said, “the Clinic used to be a yardstick for performance measurement in the medical enclave
and pride of the highly trained and experienced personnel working there.
the recent years, it was observed that services rendered at the clinic to the privileged few,
suffered noticeable decline to almost zero service delivery. This resulted to a mockery of the facility and loss of confidence by its customers on its ability to render effective
“In an effort to upturn this ugly trend and revive its past glory, the State House
Management reversed the Medical Centre profile granted the facility, to its original status
of Clinic, in order to limit the number of patients it handles and also maintain the original purpose it was created for.
“As you are all aware, in order to further improve service delivery in the Clinic, an outpatient survey was conducted in October 2019, by the SERVICOM National Office and
the State House SERVICOM unit. A Report on that regard had since been forwarded to me
and in order to review the findings of the survey, as well as propose an action plan indicating short, medium and long term actions to improve service delivery at the Clinic, I
approved that this session be convened, involving all relevant stakeholders, and cut across all departments of the clinic, with active involvement of the SERVICOM Unit, to
promote service improvement in the Clinic.”
Umar further said the authorities were also determined to address the frequent power outage which had been a major challenge to effective service provision by the hospital.
Earlier in her address, the Servicom National Coordinator, Mrs Nnenna Akajemeli said a survey conducted at the clinic identified a shortage of staff, especially Doctors, and frequent power outage among others we’re observed at the State House clinic.
This development, she said, seriously affects the waiting time in the delivery of service, adding that recurrent power failure affects sensitive machines that require constant power supply in the clinic.
Akajemeli said the two-day workshop was aimed to alleviate the shortfall in service delivery at the clinic.