NMA President seeks collaboration with alliance hospital to curb Medical Tourism

By Edward Samuel, Abuja


National President of the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA), Prof. Bala Audu has emphasized the need for collaboration to reverse medical tourism during his familiarity visit to the Medical Director of Alliance Hospital, Dr. Christopher Otabor.

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Prof. Audu highlighted the potential for attracting foreign investment and patients to Nigeria, noting, “We have very strong institutions like yours in the private sector.

“We can work together, especially in terms of reversal of medical tourism,” he stated.

Prof. Audu underscored the importance of promoting Nigeria’s medical capabilities, “We need to showcase the standard medical practices in this country so that when people are looking for these services, they know they exist.”

He recounted how Dr. Astra, a former vice president of the National Association of Resident Doctors, returned to Nigeria with impressive results, surprising even seasoned consultants.

He also stressed the role of the press in highlighting Nigeria’s medical achievements.
“The press needs to play a significant role in letting Nigerians know what we actually have in this country. People from developed countries come to pick doctors from Nigeria due to the high quality of medical education and services.”

Prof. Audu called for greater awareness and promotion of Nigeria’s medical facilities and expertise to curb the trend of Nigerians seeking healthcare abroad.

The Medical Director of Alliance Hospital, Dr. Christopher Otabor, expressed his deep admiration and highlighted the hospital’s accomplishments in combating medical tourism.

“It is an honor to have the national president visit.

“Your leadership brings a new era of excellence. Gone are the days of politically motivated presidents; now, we have leaders of true intellect and character.

“Alliance Hospital, founded in 2011, aims to curb the exodus of Nigerians seeking medical treatment abroad.

“We established this hospital to provide solutions rather than just discussing problems,” Dr. Otabor explained.

“We conduct approximately 60 joint replacement surgeries and numerous spine surgeries annually. Recently, we celebrated our first IVF triplets, and we’ve had patients come from abroad, including a woman from Canada who successfully underwent IVF here.”

Dr. Otabor highlighted the hospital’s advanced medical services, “We are a top center for kidney transplants, and our capabilities in joint and spine surgeries are well-recognized.”

Despite facing legal challenges, Dr. Otabor remains optimistic. “We have been targeted by miscreants, but we have confidence in the legal system to vindicate us,” he stated.

Reflecting on his professional journey, Dr. Otabor shared, “I was once president of the association of resident doctors and vice chairman of NMA Kaduna State. Although I’ve stepped back from NMA politics, my commitment to supporting NMA initiatives remains unwavering.”

Dr. Otabor express his commitment to advancing Nigeria’s medical landscape, Alliance Hospital is dedicated to reducing medical tourism by providing world-class healthcare locally, inspired by the exemplary leadership of Prof. Audu and the NMA.

The President of the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA), Professor Bala Audu, emphasized the importance of collaborating with private healthcare providers who have made significant strides in delivering high-quality medical services in Nigeria.

Professor Audu stated, “One of our key agendas in the Nigerian Medical Association is to ensure that Nigerians from all parts of this country receive quality health care.”

He highlighted the achievements of private health facilities in providing patient-centered care and their success in specialized medical treatments.

He noted the need for government support through adequate funding to enhance these facilities.

There is a need for the government to come in, in such a way that adequate funding at a reasonable interest rate be provided for them to obtain state-of-the-art hospitals.

Such support, he argued, would help transform Nigeria into a hub for medical tourism, reversing the trend of Nigerians seeking medical care abroad.

Professor Audu praised Alliance Hospital for its role in creating job opportunities and attracting international patients. He pointed out that facilities like Alliance Hospital provide high-quality, culturally acceptable care at a lower cost, which should encourage Nigerians to utilize domestic health services.

“Nigerians should be able to know that there are many health facilities in this country that offer high level, well specialized, patient-centered, high-quality care,” he remarked.


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