Indian High Commissioner to Nigeria, Ambassador Mahesh Sachdev
By Senator Iroegbu
The government of India has advised Nigeria to look inward and improve the standard of its health care facilities in order to alleviate the difficulties faced by Nigerians who go abroad for medical treatments and as well help to halt the attendant huge capital flight brought about because of such trips.
The Indian High Commissioner to Nigeria, Ambassador Mahesh Sachdev made this observation over the weekend at the maiden Free Medical/Health Outreach provided by Primus Super Specialty Hospital for Wuse Market, Abuja in collaboration with the Health and Human Services Secretariat of the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA).
While responding to questions from journalists, Sachdev said that it is very difficult and somewhat inhumane taking sick people to far distances (abroad) for medical treatment, and even worse when the person is critically ill.
He noted that the coming of Primus Super Specialty Hospital, Karu, as a subsidiary of Primus Group India; which was brought as a Public Private Partnership (PPP) initiative with the FCTA two years ago, is in the best interest of Nigeria.
He said: “I think I could mention that primus initiative was taken by the chairman of the Primus Group in light of the large number of Nigerians going all the way to India to attend to her hospital medical facilities.
“It is difficult for a sick person to travel, and it is even more difficult when you are seriously sick to travel that distance, and it is only humane for us to endeavour to come closer to the patients as possible.
"So by bringing specialty care to Nigeria, we have approached the problem in a different and humane way. I think the success of the hospital in that past one and half year is a witness to this strategy.”
Speaking further, the High Commissioner commended the efforts of Primus Hospital and FCTA Health and Human Services Secretariat at providing free medical services to the people in Wuse Market who do not often have such luxury for medical check ups because of the nature of their profession.
“This very significant day because this is the first time that the health camp is being organized in this part of Abuja, and this would have been impossible without the collaboration between the Primus Super Specialty Hospital and the Health and Human Services Secretariat of the FCTA. I'm glad that through this initiative we are reaching out to a vast number of Nigerians and we are doing so in a charitable free manner,” he said.
Speaking also, the Secretary, Health and Human Services Secretariat of FCTA, Dr. Demola Onakomaiya encouraged the people of Wuse Market to make best of the improved medical facilities in the Nation’s Capital including 12 Secondary and 217 Primary Healthcare Centres.
Onakomaiya noted that apart from the free medical treatment being provided, the main aim is to create awareness on the importance of imbibing the habit regular medical check ups.