LASUTH highlights medical strides, commits to advancing specialised healthcare interventions

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By Oluwafunke Ishola

The Lagos State University Teaching Hospital (LASUTH) says it is strategically positioned to administer comprehensive and specialised healthcare procedures and intervention that aligns with global best practices for patients with complex diseases.

The Chief Medical Director of LASUTH, Prof. Adetokunbo Fabamwo, said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) while highlighting the hospital’s medical strides and plans to accelerate quality healthcare services for citizens.

Fabamwo affirmed that LASUTH had deployed various strategies and programmes to actualise the hospital’s commitment to being a leading advanced tertiary health care provider in Nigeria and Africa.

According to him, the hospital is well-equipped with state-of-the-art healthcare facilities suitable in improving and promoting quality of life and wellness of the populace and reducing medical tourism.

“We have certain areas of advanced tertiary care that we pride ourselves as being proficient in. First and foremost, let me start with the cardiac catheterisation lab.

“A cardiac cath lab is a lab where interventional cardiology procedures are carried out. Procedures like insertion of pacemakers, removing clots from the lungs, from the heart, and so on.

“We started about three years ago, and as we speak, we have carried out about 350 life-saving procedures in that pathway.

“We’ve also been lucky to have missions from abroad, people who came with expertise, equipment and consumables, such that we could do quite a number of cases, virtually free of charge,” he said.

According to him, LASUTH is one of the few hospitals that conduct open heart surgery in the country.

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The CMD noted that in the past expatriates came from abroad to assist in performing the open heart surgery, however, in the past three years, it had been running autonomously and conducting regular open-heart surgery with its local team.

“As a matter of fact, our team is being asked all over Nigeria to come and assist in setting up open-heart surgery programmes in other teaching hospitals.

“Our team is led by Prof. Bode Falase, and he has three other cardiothoracic surgeons that we have intentionally recruited to join him,” he said.

Fabamwo further said that the quaternary hospital boasts of an ultra-modern obstetric unit – the Ayinke House which was re-commissioned in 2019 after some infrastructural upgrade.

He said that Ayinke House, as a multispecialty medical centre. provided comprehensive maternal services and professional training for medical students and resident doctors in the state.

According to him, the centre has a 170-bed facility with five surgical theatres, 22 consultant obstetrician and gynecologist, handles complications associated with pregnancy with its intensive care facilities, well-equipped Haematology Department and other support staff.

“We offer multidisciplinary high-end care to high-risk cases and these have assisted to reduce morbidity and mortality among pregnant women,” he said.

The CMD said LASUTH was one of the few hospitals that has an Endoscopy unit, noting that the unit was dedicated for Endoscopy procedures, a minimally invasive surgical or medical procedure that examines the digestive tract to detect diseases.

Fabamwo said that the hospital also conducts cochlear implants, noting that the procedure was sensitive and devices used were expensive.

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Cochlear implants are small electronic devices that improve hearing for individuals with moderate, profound or severe hearing loss.

According to him, most patients that benefited from cochlear implants at LASUTH are usually sponsored patients, disclosing that each implant cost about N6 million.

“Because the procedure is expensive, we have not done many cochlear implants. Since we started about four years ago, I don’t think we have done more than 50 implants,” he said.

On strategies to increase uptake and affordability for cochlear implants, Fabamwo advocated increased awareness and sponsors for patients that require cochlear implants from individuals, philanthropists, NGOs.

Besides, Fabamwo emphasised that consultant nephrologists and consultant urological surgeons in LASUTH are skilled at conducting kidney transplants.

Fabamwo, however, said the programme was slowed down because LASUTH does not accept commercial kidney donation.

“We cannot, as a government establishment, deal with commercial kidney donation.

“A lot of family members hesitate to donate their kidneys to their relatives. But we insist that if you are going to do a transplant, the donation of the kidney must come from a family member.

“So that has slowed down our programme. We are not doing as much as we should be doing. Whereas when you go to the private sector, you see a lot of kidney transplants being done.

“Because that clause of not using commercial donors is under-emphasised in the private sector,” he said.

According to him, the  hospital takes pride in its Critical Care Unit equipped with the state-of-the-art treatment and monitoring equipment manned by experts in different specialties.

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Fabamwo noted that the unit was deployed for the care of those in dire health condition that hitherto, predisposed them towards foreign medical tourism.

The CMD, however, said that the volatilities of foreign exchange has been assisting to reverse medical tourism, noting that people are looking inward for solutions to their medical challenges, as seeking treatment abroad was expensive and not easily accessible.

“Quite a number of people now have been limited in terms of being able to go abroad for medicare. So they are coming back.

“What is important is that our setup remains excellent so that when they come, we do not fold our hands. We will meet up with their expectations and offer excellent services. And that’s what we are trying to do in LASUTH,” he said.

Fabamwo affirmed that LASUTH would continue to expand its healthcare infrastructure, leverage cutting-edge technology, enhance knowledge and skills of healthcare workers, foster innovative public-private partnerships to provide quality, efficient, and inclusive healthcare services to citizens. (NAN)

 

Edited by Vivian Ihechu

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