‘Nigeria loses $1bn to an­nual med­i­cal tourism’

Daily Trust - - NEWS - By Ka­mardeen Is­mail

The As­so­ci­a­tion of Gen­eral and Pri­vate Med­i­cal Prac­ti­tion­ers of Nigeria (AGPMPN) said Nigeria is los­ing over $1bn an­nu­ally on med­i­cal treat­ment abroad.

Pres­i­dent of AGPMPN, Dr Frank Odafen, made this known yes­ter­day at an event or­ga­nized to mark this year’s Pri­vate Med­i­cal Prac­ti­tion­ers Day with the theme,” The roles of pri­vate med­i­cal prac­ti­tion­ers in the health econ­omy of the na­tion.”

Odafen said spend­ing such huge amount for treat­ment out­side the shores of the na­tion, spelled doom for the health sec­tor and the na­tion’s econ­omy at large.

He re­it­er­ated the com­mit­ment of the as­so­ci­a­tion to re­verse the med­i­cal tourism and to make the coun­try a hub of med­i­cal tourism for the sub­Sa­ha­ran Africa.

“We do re­al­ize that over a bil­lion naira is sapped ev­ery year by med­i­cal tourists to In­dia, Ger­many, Amer­ica, China and Dubai. We are de­ter­mined as a group to help re­verse med­i­cal tourism which saps the nec­tar of our for­eign re­serve,” he said.

Odafen who dis­closed that the as­so­ci­a­tion is re­spon­si­ble for the health care of over 70% of Nige­ri­ans said fund re­mained the ma­jor chal­lenge to spread its ten­ta­cles to a larger so­ci­ety.

He there­fore sought part­ner­ship with the govern­ment to re­duce child ma­ter­nal mor­tal­ity and es­tab­lish a world cen­tre for health care de­liv­ery, where Nige­ri­ans, both rich and poor can ac­cess ef­fec­tive and re­li­able health care ser­vices.

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