Dr Nurudeen Akindele, a general practice doctor, on Tuesday urged governments at all levels to put money into health insurance, to improve Nigerian health care system.
Akindele, who works with an NGO, Humanity First International, Nigeria made the plea in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos, against the backdrop of Nigeria’s 59th Independence Anniversary.
He spoke on the sidelines of the grand finale of the seventh edition of free health mission organised by Prince Bisi Yusuff, a member of the Lagos State House of Assembly, representing Alimosho Constituency I.
NAN reports that the lawmaker’s annual gesture under his foundation “Prince Hope Turns to Reality Foundation”, is to mark his birthday.
Akindele, a former chairman, National Association of Resident Doctors of Nigeria, Federal Medical Centre, Abeokuta, said, “We need to reduce the health burden of the less privileged, who cannot afford health care.
“No government in Nigeria is doing enough in the area of health. Let us start with the personnel, the percentage of doctors to patients, nurses to patients, we are not doing enough. This is the truth.
“The way to go is health insurance. Let the government put enough money into health insurance and upgrade medical equipment, with this, health care will be fantastic.”
The medical doctor, however, gave a pass mark to successive governments in Lagos State for their concerted efforts towards providing affordable health care especially for the poor.
Akindele decried the rate of medical tourism and brain drain due to of adequate attention to the sector and practitioners.
“Why are people going out? people go out for medical tourism to developed countries, for things that can easily be done here.
“Nigerian doctors are fantastic. So, the government needs to encourage us. Government should make the doctors feel wanted and reward them for their efforts, as we celebrate 59th Independence ,” he added.
The expert commended the generosity of the lawmaker in bankrolling surgeries for hundreds of patients and medical treatment of thousands across the six council areas in Alimosho Local Government Area.
“When you are doing over 200 or 300 surgeries, I am sure everyone knows what has gone into it in terms of money. This is a very wonderful health care delivery sponsored by a single person.
“If somebody is doing more than 300 surgeries freely for the people, such person has given much back to the society.”
He commended the lawmaker for being an exemplary light to other representatives of the people in the corridors of power.
NAN reports that the five-day free health mission, which began on Thursday, Sept. 26, at Ipaja-Ayobo Local Council Development Area (LCDA), the permanent venue for all surgeries, was later extended to other LCDAs in Alimosho constituency.
The health mission covered surgeries for hernia, ganglion, lumpectomy, keloids, while free eye screening and glasses were provided for those who had eye care challenges.
The mission also checked blood pressure, treated malaria and conducted tests for HIV, Hepatitis, among others. (NAN)