An Eye specialist, Dr Adekunle Hassan, has called for adoption of new model of primary, secondary and tertiary healthcare network to change methods of healthcare delivery in Nigeria.
Hassan, also the Chief Executive Officer, Eye Foundation Hospital Group, made the call on Wednesday at the 16th Horatio Oritsejolomi Thomas and 57th Founder’s Day Lecture in Lagos.
It was organised by the College of Medicine, University of Lagos, Idi-Araba, Lagos.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the title of the lecture was: “Health Challenges in Nigeria: Building on the Legacies of Our Leaders”.
Hassan said that adoption of new models would change the methods of healthcare delivery system.
“Investors and private healthcare providers are already creating parallel primary healthcare models with free access to doctors and consultation in the poor urban areas.
“There is need for the health institutions to partner with the primary healthcare centres of old and engage in signing a Memorandum of Understanding with local government authorities and health stakeholders.
“Successful models are the Doctor Express and the Eye Foundation Primary Eye Care Centres.
“I believe that the teaching institutions in Lagos as in other parts of the country have lost touch with the reality of the changing model of healthcare delivery system,” Hassan said.
He said that teaching institutions could create their own primary healthcare centres and man them with experienced senior residents and nurses in training.
“It will provide a pool of patients at the bottom of the pyramid for their training, resource generation and also improve capacity utilisation of the hospital facilities.
“There should be a free access to facilities by patients at the bottom of the pyramid, while hospitals can generate revenue from the value chain of the healthcare delivery service like drugs,” Hassan said.
He said healthcare was ours to conquer in order to invest in the future of others.
This, Hassan said, was because healthcare was no longer in the sole domain of doctors and patients, but also belongs to policy makers and investors.
“Health is wealth is an old adage, but how far do we, as a nation, believe in this basic truth?
“At the global level, where technological advancement and funding dynamics of healthcare is quite challenging and colossal, there is still an impending crisis due to cost implication.
“In the 60s and 70s, there was well structured and relatively high standard for healthcare delivery, with well-equipped health institutions for training and service delivery.
“The healthcare policy was robust and well-articulated and implemented, if things have followed the projected trajectory, Nigeria today will have been a centre of world healthcare tourism,” Hassan said.
He said that there was a critical need for leadership engagement in building an environment that reinforces innovative thinking.
“Also, the establishment of a viable independent, world class private practice unit within the Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH), is long overdue.
“This is essential for wealth creation, skill transfer and retention of the best brains in the institution,” Hassan said. (NAN)