By Rabiu Sani
The Borno Government on Wednesday said it had concluded plans to set up three major referral centers to enhance healthcare services at the grassroots.
The Commissioner of Health, Dr Salisu Kwaya-Bura, made this known on Wednesday during the Foundation Laying Ceremony of a Physical Rehabilitation Center (PRC), at the University of Maiduguri Teaching Hospital (UMTH).
Kwaya-Bura disclosed that the new referral centers would be established in Bama, Monguno and Biu Local Government Areas of the state.
He said that the government would equally establish an additional College of Health0 to enhance training and manpower development of health personnel in the state.
The commissioner explained that the measure was part of a comprehensive programme to de-centralize existing tertiary health facilities and ensure delivery of quality healthcare services to rural communities.
According to him, the state was working in collaboration with the Federal Government and development organizations to reinvigorate the health sector, which was negatively affected by insurgency.
Kwaya-Bura called for closer collaboration between the state government and UMTH to enhance the training of medical personnel and ensure improvement in healthcare service delivery in the state.
He commended the International Committee of the Red Cross over the construction of the rehabilitation center, meant to assist persons with disabilities and enhance orthopedic treatment.
Prof. Ahmed Ahidjo, the UMTH Chief Medical Director, revealed that the hospital had initiated various projects to upgrade it to 1, 000 bed capacity and enhance its operations to meet the challenges of the growing population.
Ahidjo disclosed that the hospital had also embarked on the construction of a Trauma Center in collaboration with the defunct Presidential Committee on Northeast Initiative.
He listed other projects to include construction of comprehensive Child Institute, Burn and Stroke centers, among others.
Also commenting, Alhaji Hadi Gumel, the Chairman of the UMTH Board, lauded the hospital’s clean environment, describing it as “the most cleanest tertiary health institution,’’ in the country.
Gumel assured of the Board’s support to ensure successful completion of all ongoing projects in the hospital.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that ICRC contributed about 3.5 million dollars for the execution of the rehabilitation center project.
The center is designed to treat about 2, 000 persons with disabilities annually and manufacture orthopedic devices for victims of insurgency. (NAN)