UMTH ultra-modern cancer centre to reduce medical tourism – FG

The Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Health, Mahmuda Mamman, has said that the newly built cancer centre at the University of Maiduguri Teaching Hospital, Maiduguri, Borno State, would end medical tourism in Nigeria when completed.

Mamman stated this on Wednesday in Maiduguri when he led officials of the ministry on an inspection tour to the teaching hospital on projects/programmes, special interventions and COVID-19 released funds’ performance from 2020 to 2021.

He said UMTH is leading the revolution of the nation’s health sector being undertaken by the present administration with the state of the art facilities at the hospital’s disposal such as the trauma centre, new cancer and kidney centres as well as available manpower, which are changing the face of health service delivery in Borno and the Northeast sub-region.

Mamman noted that UMTH is one of the very few teaching hospitals that have adequate and modern medical facilities in the country, adding that in terms of cancer treatment, the UMTH is ready to assist cancer patients not only from the Northeast sub-region but across the country.

He said, “The UMTH cancer centre is one of the best. It is coming up as a new centre that is beating the trend of those that already exist in the country. Along with the kidney centre, when they are finally completed and put into use, they will reduce medical tourism by Nigerians to other countries.

“When we have Nigerians going abroad to meet Nigerians treating them, why can’t they stay here in Nigeria and treat Nigerians.”

The Chief Medical Director of the hospital, Professor Ahmed Ahidjo, said the cancer centre had gulped over five billion naira and when completed, it will be the biggest cancer centre in sub-Saharan Africa.

The CMD also revealed that the hospital had already begun research into kidney disease, just as the hospital was researching into other fields of medicine and health care.

“So far, we have spent over five billion naira to build the cancer centre and the cancer treatment facilities.

“The biggest cancer centre in Nigeria as of today is at the Lagos University Teaching Hospital. It was built at the cost of N12bn naira, but the one we are building will be the biggest and it will be able to treat cancer patients from every part of the world.

“We have also invested N50m donated by the state government as research grant to the hospital to enable us to conduct research in kidney diseases that are prevalent in the Northeast,” Ahmed Ahidjo added.

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