Are you in Abuja this week? Then, you are in for a treat There is so much happening Events that you should not miss Fantastic and fabulous mixed together! The NSP Conference The Nigerian Society of Physiotherapists kicks things off on Monday 21st October with a National Conference. The conference is talking majorly about reversing health tourism. We are losing shitloads of money on a daily basis and losing the lives and limbs of many people as Nigerians troop out in large numbers for health care in other countries. It means we are not developing our own as we enrich other nations. It really is time to stop being so selfish and stupid in the process of shopping for health care. I mean being poor is bad enough but being stupid and poor is just the pits. The little money we have can be used to develop services in Nigeria that will benefit more Nigerians rather than spend lots of money we don’t have in other countries simply because ‘’you’’ can afford it. It is time the government talk the talk and walk the walk. They have failed miserably so far in delivering on promises to restrain government officials from travelling out for health tourism. The Physiotherapists are leading on this and the conference will proffer solutions. Amen! The GMD Conference The Guild of Medical Directors (GMD) is set to partner with the Federal Government to tackle the issue of Universal Health Coverage (UHC) in the country. Universal Health Coverage is about ensuring a progressive expansion of coverage of health services and financial protection as more resources become available. Universal health coverage ensures that individuals and communities receive the health services they need without suffering severe and crippling financial hardship. The 25th Annual General Meeting and Scientific Conference of the GMD will come up this week starting Friday. The event slated for the 25 and 26th October would discuss widely and submit solutions as private medical practitioners lead the vanguard. The National President of the GMD, Professor Olufemi Babalola said in Abuja earlier this week that “the pivotal role of the GMD in delivery of over 70 per cent of health care in Nigeria, places it in a strong position to assist Nigerians access health at their door step’’. He further pointed out that there is a private hospital in most parts and even in the remotest parts of Nigeria. Such that the GMD supporting the government, can reduce the poor health indices of Nigerians. The government by working with the GMD can almost overnight expand the capacity in managing Nigerians close to where they live. This conference (at the Shehu Musa Yarádua Conference centre) promises to be a platform of providing adequate information to participants to protect the interest of both healthcare buyers and beneficiaries of medical health schemes. By interaction, revelation of the rights and privileges of the citizenry in respect of private medical practice will be known. Further, the need for medical entrepreneurship would be highlighted as a profitable and necessary industry for the Nigerian economy. The general public and all relevant stakeholders are enjoined to interact with the GMD. Everyone is invited to contribute to the success of the conference by participating and contributing actively. A little bird told me that the FCT Minister, Ministers of Health and Minister of State for Health are some of the heavy weights attending the conference. This shows the importance the government places on health and interest to get it right. There is movement in the right direction. At long last! At first As an aside, we must point out that private hospitals in Nigeria are bringing new innovation and processes into health care and it is becoming unnecessary to travel abroad for care. Such innovations range from kidney transplant surgeries, open heart operations to minimal access surgery in different specialities. Only this weekend, the FIRST endovascular (coiling) of an aneurysm was performed at Euracare Specialist Hospital in Lagos. A monumental achievement! Surgical clipping of another intracranial aneurysm was performed in a collaborative operation at the National hospital around the same time. Dr Charles Ugwuanyi and the team at the National Hospital made this happen in Abuja in a patient that would have had to travel to India a few months ago. Crusaders! The progress being made by the private sector in collaboration with public hospitals and practitioners will allow the GMD to support the efforts of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) in improving access to high end specialist care along with a robust response in primary/secondary care. The AGM will discuss the ramifications of stronger partnership with the NHIS to ensure deliverables are met for better country-wide health coverage. The NMA Conference Okay, the event is strictly not this week but it’s totally worthwhile to intimate you about the conference organised by the Baba of associations, the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA). The second National Health Summit is talking about Patient Centred Health Care. In November, starting on the 4th and running to the 9th. This is something special as the NMA is focussing on every Nigerian life and their right to quality health care. The stage is set! NB: The Nigerian Patients Are Worth It! Oh goodness! I forgot someone most important. Dr Stella Adadevoh, the doctor that saved Nigeria from the Ebola epidemic would have been 63 year old this weekend. 27TH of October to be precise! We got to mark the day!