‘NHEA will Help Reduce Medical Tourism in Nigeria’

Martins Ifijeh

The organisers of the Nigeria Healthcare Excellence Award (NHEA) have stated that the recognition of excellence in the health sector will help curb medical tourism in the country, as organisations and stakeholders in the sector continue to strive for benchmarks attracting recognition.

Speaking at the selection phase from the over 1600 nominated health organisations, non-core health facilities and personalities, the former Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Health, Lagos State and a member of the NHEA Advisory Board, Dr. Femi Olugbile, said it was high time excellence was domesticated in the country so that Nigerians can know which health facilities or organisations should be approached for a particular health issue or the other.

“This award will spur a lot of people and healthcare providers to improve on their services, which in turn will translate into better healthcare for the country,” adding that, “this is just part of the drive to measure excellence. There are other drives which involve accreditation and so on,” he added.

According to the Chairman of the Advisory Board of NHEA, Dr. Anthony Omolola, the selection committee will be thorough in identifying the organisations and persons who have done very well in the health sector and then encourage them to do more through the recognition. “We will thrive to recognise those who have contributed immensely to the health and wellbeing of Nigerians. Although there is no perfect healthcare anywhere, we try to recognise those moving towards perfection.

He noted that the award, which is hailed as the Oscar of Nigeria’s health sector had a total of 1,673 nominations from over 80 organisations and individuals from all the 36 states of Nigeria, adding that the number has been pruned down by diligent and painstaking selection process.

Among the individuals and organisations that met the final nomination phase are Prince Julius Adelusi-Adeluyi and Professor Olu Akinyanju for the Lifetime Achievement Award. Dangote Foundation, UBA Foundation, Airtel and MTN Foundation for the Outstanding CSR Health Project for 2016 awards.

Those nominated for the Outstanding State Healthcare Programme of the year are Rivers State Primary Health Scheme, Ondo State Abuye Health Programme, Akwa Ibom Specialist Hospital and Ondo State Trauma and Surgical Centre. For Healthcare Media Excellence Awards (print) those who met the final phase are Kemi Ajumobi of Business Day, Bukola Adebayo of Punch, Chioma Obinna of Vanguard and Martins Ifijeh of THISDAY.

Also on the list are 20 other categories spanning from Healthcare Friendly Institution of the year, Private Healthcare Provider of the year, Health Maintenance Organisation of the year, among others.

The NHEA is scheduled to hold tomorrow at the Eko Hotel and Suites, Victoria Island, Lagos,by 5pm with the Minister of Health, Prof. Isaac Adewole as special guest of honour.

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