Nigeria’s Minister of Health, Isaac Adewole, has inaugurated a Tuberculosis Mobile detection facility in Kano State.
A statement by the ministry on Thursday said the facility was inaugurated under the Wellness on Wheels (WoW) programme at the Muhammadu Buhari Specialist Hospital, Kano to improve detection of the infectious killer disease across the state.
“This will move everywhere in the state and detect TB patients for appropriate free treatment,” the statement quoted the minister.
Tuberculosis is the second highest killer disease globally and Nigeria has one of the heaviest burden of the disease in the world. As at 2017, WHO ranked Nigeria the fourth most infected country by the disease worldwide.
Unfortunately, many cases in the country remain undetected, with Kano one of the states in Nigeria where the disease is endemic. Last year, the state Commissioner for Health, Kabiru Getso, said Kano recorded over 7,000 cases of Tuberculosis and 21 deaths.
Speaking at the inauguration of the TB mobile facility, Mr Adewole lamented that Nigeria is one of the countries with large number of undetected TB patients in the world. He said only 25 percent of TB cases have been detected with many of the remaining unaware they are TB patients.
“Wellness on Wheels (WoW) programme on TB is aimed at providing diagnostic facility and treatment to the Tuberculosis patients at their door step,” hesaied.
At same venue, the minister on behalf of Kano State Governor, Umar Ganduje, also inaugurated the Boards of the Kano State Health Trust Fund (KHETFUND) Agency, Private Health Institutions Management Agency (PHIMA) and Kano Ultra-Modern Special Hospitals (KUSH).
According to the minister, all the programmes launched were geared towards achieving Universal Health Coverage.
Commending the governor on his effort to elevate the health sector in the state, Mr Adewole advised that the Muhammadu Buhari Specialist Hospital should be operated on different platform.
“It should be run by independent board. Those to work in the hospital can be seconded from other organisations,” he said. “Workers must not go on strike, but the they should be paid higher than other workers so that they can be encouraged to give their best and work 24-hour a day.”
In his remarks, Mr Ganduje said the Muhammadu Buhari Specialist Hospital was established to provide services not only to the state populace, but to the entire country.
“Our intention is not only to serve the people of Kano State but to make Kano a centre of medical tourism in order to reduce foreign medical tourism,” the governor declared.
Also speaking at the event, the Emir of Kano, Muhmmadu Sanusi II, called on Nigerians especially the wealthiest people to support government at all levels with health facilities or equipment, saying government alone cannot meet the needs of all Nigerians.