Published On: Thu, Jul 2nd, 2020

Abuja National Hospital Treats 50,000 Patients In 6 Months – CMD

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News Investigators/ Chief Medical Director (CMD), National Hospital, Abuja, Jeff Momoh, says the hospital attended to no fewer than 50,000 patients for routine care in the past six months.

Mr. Momoh, a medical doctor, disclosed this at a joint meeting of Minister of Health and Medical Directors of Government Hospitals in Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Catchment on Thursday in Abuja.

“This year, so far, we have had over 50,000 out patients care at National Hospital compared with 2019 that we had 65,000 patients.

“So, it looks like patients are not coming for routine check because of fear COVID-19.

“In patient admission are over 5, 000 compared with over 6,000 this time last year, again, a slight drop, but nevertheless we have not stop caring for patients,’’ he said.

He told the minister that the hospital had not stopped caring for patients despite lockdown caused by the COVID-19.

“We are still caring for patients and our cancer centre has not shut down for one hour.

“We have witnessed increased patronage because people that supposed to travel abroad now come to us,’’ he said.

According to him, the National Hospital, which is recognised as cancer centre of excellence, has also braced up to treat COVID-19 patients.

“All tertiary hospitals have been faced to manage COVID-19, so we were asked to set up isolation centre and holding areas, so were able to increase five-bed isolation centre to 28-bed.

“Initially, we were not designated as treatment centre for COVID-19, but we were prepared in case other tertiary hospitals were overwhelmed.

“In short period, all our beds space were filled up. We had to open up a holding area for patients not yet tested. It has helped us to handle emergencies.

“We have a 17-bed holding area and we have seen 118 patients in holding area, not yet tested in our holding area, but critically ill at the point of arrival,’’ he said.

The CMD told the stakeholders that late presentation of cases to the hospital was one of the challenges the hospital had been facing, as those cases would be difficult to handle.

“I want to appeal to Nigerians to always come to the hospital early whenever they are not feeling fine,’’ he said.

In addition, he said the hospital had succeeded in treating 97 COVID-19 patients, discharged 66; 44 currently on admission while six had died.

Earlier, the Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire, said the ministry in collaboration with the FCTA had established new measures to address issues of very sick persons being denied medical attention in hospitals.

“Efforts to control COVID- 19 was being carried out by most healthcare workers in and around the FCT such that it is getting challenging for patients with other diseases to be attended to, the way they ought to be.

“We must not be at the expense of allowing other diseases that are equally life threatening to begin to thrive and increase mortality.

“It would be a serious setback, if medical services, especially emergency medical service, begin to deteriorate in the wake of fighting COVID-19,” he said.

The minister said his office had been inundated by frequent reports of very sick persons being rejected and abandoned by our hospitals.

“Many have died having been denied attention in hospitals, or told there is no bed, often after they have made marathon journeys from one hospital to the other in search of help.

“This is not acceptable;’’ the minster told the medical directors.

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