Infant Mortality Rate In Nigeria; Abia State Governor Builds and Commissions Children Specialist Hospital
Studies show thvcdat even routine procedures at children’s hospitals are generally safer with fewer complications and lower mortality rates than those performed on kids on adult hospital setting.
To achieve a society where the lives of children are safe, Governor Okezie Ikpeazu has built and commissioned the Abia State Children’s Specialist Hospital, AnnaMarie Jackson Medical Center, Umuahia.
Governor Ikpeazu at the commissioning said the decision to build the facility stems from the need to tackle infant and maternal mortality and improve on health care delivery in the state. “What you see here is the last appendage of our health care delivery plan. Our plan is to improve on health outcomes, calculated by time tested indices like infant and maternal mortality as well as life expectancy”.he said.
My challenge in Abia is to ensure that by the time I leave in 2023 that life expectancy for Abia will be higher than the national average. And in crafting or pursuing this vision, we saw that the best strategy was to capture the vulnerable extremes; the geriatrics, those that are 70 years and above as well as the mother and child”, he added.
He revealed that he was keen on building an edifice that will cater for the needs of children because the facility boasts of all equipments needed to speak to the needs of children, hence, the name a Specilaist hospital, even as there is already an ongoing project for the geriatrics.
He said “we think that it is the right of every child to live and we think that it is the responsinility of government to give very child, every Abian, an opportunity, a fair chance to live, that is why we have brought this facility to this place”.
According to the Governor, to achieve the facility, critical and technical collaborations and expertise of Abians in the diaspora was sought. He explained that the second name “AnnaMarie Jackon Medical Center”was in keeping to the promise made to Dr.Jackson that facilitated the importation of medical equipments that has supported what the state has inside the facility.
Governor Ikpeazu noted that the hospital was fully funded by the state government, “The resources for this hospital today is provided by Abia State Government but technical support today and in the days ahead will be provided by Abians in the Diaspora.
National Chairman of the People’s Democratic Party, PDP, Senator Iyorchia Ayu, while commissioning the hospital said contrary to speculations about security in the state, Abia remains very safe. PDP Governors he revealed have made the country proud and Governor Okezie Ikpeazu is not an exemption as he has continued to blaze the trail, and commended him for thinking outside the box by providing a fully equipped children specialist hospital which is very important.
The Abia State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Joe Osuji applaudedd the Governor for providing adequate health care system that is affordable and accessible to Abians. The present administration he explained has provided quality health care as evidenced by the number of basic health care trust fund, Abia State Health Insurance Scheme and Abia TeleHealth Initiative.
The health commissioner said the facility will serve as a training institution for medical and nursing interns specializing in paediatrics and child health.
Dr. Ngozi Erondu, Director General, Abia State Diaspora Commission, in her speech said the facility was specially built to Carter for the needs of children. She revealed that the dream of having a children’s hospital in the state became a reality four years later despite the challenges faced.
Dr. Erondu explained that the facility provides a kid-centered care to children from newborn to 18 years, and will be staffed by well trained professionals in the area of child care. She explained that given the anticipated shortage of well qualified personnel,Diasporans will be engaged to provide their knowledge and expertise which will help in filling the gap while the equipment dedicated to the care of children will be sourced and provided rather than applying inefficient approach of adjusting adult equipment to fit their needs.
The Abia Diaspora boss said the hospital will further deepen the fight against child mortality. According to her ” although the infant mortality rate in the state has improved having dedicated hospital will undoubtedly reduce it even further”.
Also speaking, Dr. Mrs. Edith Ugboaja, the Project Consultant noted that the idea of building a children’s hospital is a noble stride of the state Governor, Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu and applauded his commitment and vision at ensuring that the health sector is given a facelift. Dr. Ugboaja said an awareness creation is necessary in the area of child care which the facility intends to fill having being equipped with world class level Hitech equipment to enhance accurate diagnosis and proper treatment of diseases that are prevalent in this population. She said ” th biggest advantage of a children’s hospital is that patient care approach is tailored to meet the healthcare needs of this population as well as the emotional and psychological needs of their parents and caregivers”.
Dr. Ugboaja revealed that some of the services to be rendered to the hospital include caring for children aged 0 to 18, neonatology, surgery, pharmacy, laboratory, x-ray, ultrasound, health promotion and disease prevention”. Therefore our goal for this specialist hospital is to create an atmosphere that supports healing by ensuring that patients and their families will receive holistic care and that every patient as well as their family will be treated with dignity and respect regardless of their class or social status.”