By Bashir Bello
KATSINA—President Muhammadu Buhari, yesterday commissioned a 60-bed reference hospital constructed by the Nigerian Air Force, NAF to provide healthcare service delivery for its personnel on active duty, especially in theatre of operations and also residents of Daura and environs in Katsina State.
Speaking while commissioning the project, Buhari, said equipment provided in the hospital would also minimize the need for medical tourism and help to save the much needed foreign exchange that could be channelled into other sectors of the economy.
According to him, “The state-of-the-art medical equipment for radio-diagnostics, cancer screening, dialysis and laboratory diagnosis provided in the hospital will minimize the need for medical tourism and help to save the much needed foreign exchange that can be channelled into other sectors of the economy.
“More importantly, the facility is poised to provide the much-needed trauma care for personnel on active duty, especially those engaged in various theatres of operation. This will go a long way in boosting the morale of personnel as well as encourage them to give their best in the cause of service to our fatherland.”
The President said his administration had invested huge resources in the health sector to improve life expectancy and reduce some of the killers associated with child and maternal mortality to less than 70 deaths per 100,000 live birth by the Year 2030, saying: ”Many more efforts are needed to fully eradicate a wide range of diseases and many persistent and emerging health issues in our society.
“To achieve this, all hands must be on deck to save the lives of millions of Nigerians. It, therefore, suffices to state that there is no auspicious time to commission this Reference Hospital than now.
“The hospital will assist the Federal and State Governments in providing standard and affordable health services to the people of Daura and other adjoining towns and villages, with a view to supplementing the existing secondary and tertiary facilities.
“It would also serve as a centre for medical research where medical practitioners collaborate to find solutions to public health challenges in the country,” Buhari said.
The President commended the Chief of the Air Staff for embarking on the laudable and noble project, which he said is worthy of commendation and emulation.