Bauchi Governor, Bala Mohammed, yesterday, inaugurated the state’s reference molecular laboratory with the pledge to commit N85 million to upgrade its services.
Speaking at the centre sited at the Specialist Hospital, Bauchi, Governor Mohammed said the funds would enable the centre to carry out laboratory tests on Yellow fever, Lassa fever and other hemorrhagic fevers, among other diseases.
Mohammed lamented that the state government was paying more than N15 million every two weeks for contact tracing and surveillance, case management, risk communication, infection prevention and coordination.
He said with the certification of the molecular laboratory by the Nigeria Centre for the Disease Control (NCDC), the state would cut down on cost and the waiting time for results of tests.
“I emphasise that this molecular laboratory is one of our cardinal strategies in combating the spread of COVID-19 and Lassa fever outbreaks.
“This laboratory was established under a joint partnership with the Bauchi State Government, North-East Development Commission (NEDC) and the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control with Bauchi government provided funding for the construction of the building and procurement of furniture and power supply,” he said.
Mohammed assured that his administration would remain committed towards the provision of qualitative healthcare services to citizens through construction and renovation of health facilities across the state.
He pledged that his administration would also prioritise the welfare of frontline healthcare workers in the state so as to to tackle challenges facing the sector and ensure effective service delivery to patients.
He demanded that the Federal Government consider Bauchi in the proposed centres of excellence in medicine saying a significant number of people in states challenged by severe security problems in the North East had found sanctuary in the state.