The Ekiti State University Teaching Hospital (EKSUTH) is growing and groaning. Assistant Editor, Sam Nwaoko, reports the cry of its Chief Medical Director, Dr. Patrick ‘Temi Adegun, for support by citizens of the state and the steps so far taken by the state government to improve facilities at the tertiary health institution.
THE average man on the streets of Ado Ekiti, the Ekiti State capital, refers to the Ekiti State University Teaching Hospital (EKSUTH) as “state.” The nearest reason for this simple and anachronistic nomenclature, according to unconfirmed sources was because it was called “state hospital”, being perhaps, the only public health institution in Ado Ekiti in days of yore. The new status of the hospital notwithstanding, the name has stuck but seems to be gradually wearing off, given the changing times.
Some now call it ‘teaching hospital’ and this gives inkling to the fact that with time, its public reference would change as it is also changing fast in infrastructure, equipment and overall status. But these changes seem to be taking eternity to come, with numerous contending demands from its financier, the state government, detracting from the attention it deserves. This is even more so when the position of Ekiti in the lower rung of the national financial ladder is considered.
However, the Ekiti State government under Dr. Kayode Fayemi has been doing its bit in the quest to bring the hospital to the status that every positive stakeholder in and outside the state wants it to be. Last year, Governor Fayemi inaugurated its central drug store with facilities and sundry requirements, thereby boosting quality drug distribution service in the hospital and around the health facilities around the state.
This year as the Fayemi-led government marked its second anniversary, the governor again inaugurated multi-million naira facilities and ambulances at the hospital. The facilities included a new Accident and Emergency ward, a laboratory and a male surgical ward. He also handed seven new ambulances over to representatives of the various communities in the state after inaugurating them. While inaugurating the facilities, Governor Fayemi also made a promise to increase funding of health care services in the state.
Over N12million was expended on the re-roofing of the hospital’s Theatre Complex the governor disclosed and also stated that the Accident and Emergency Ward and the laboratory with standard equipment cost N190.5. Fayemi also hinted that the newly-renovated Male Surgical Ward of EKSUTH gulped N51.5million while the seven ambulances with in-built state-of-the-art intensive care gadgets were acquired at the cost of N119million. In addition to these, he said his government also provided necessary tools and equipment worth over N130million.
Apart from these, 94 citizens of the state in need of various healthcare services were given financial assistance to the tune of about N70million, Governor Fayemi noted on the occasion.
He said the multi-million naira projects as well as the seven ambulances were aimed at providing effective ambulance services and ensure prompt attention during emergencies in the state. Fayemi added that the gesture was a further step at fulfilling the desire of his administration to deliver high quality health care services with standard health facilities to the people of Ekiti State in line with the eight-point agenda of his administration.
To complement the efforts of the state government, the Chief Medical Director (CMD) of the hospital, Dr. Patrick Adegun, told the Nigerian Tribune that its management has devised means of boosting patronage of the hospital by the rich in the state and thereby also generate funds internally as well as sustain the standard that has been attained at the hospital.
For instance, Dr. Adegun explained in a recent interview that the management would construct a VIP section for members of the upper echelon of the society, pointing out that this would help attract those with enough financial muscle to patronize the hospital to seek medical help and prevent them “from seeking medical help outside that state when they can have their privacy here.”
Dr. Adegun appealed to citizens of Ekiti State who are well to do to donate to the hospital because, according to him, “running a teaching hospital is very expensive all over the world.” He said “nobody will develop our state for us; we are the ones who would do it. They can donate structures, equipment and expertise to the hospital to help in the quest for quality service delivery to the people of the state.”
On how the management has been coping with the paucity of funds, Dr. Adegun said “when God calls you, He equips you with the tool to do the job. That is what propelled us to say ‘yes we can.” He reiterated the need for citizens of the state in and outside the country to come to the aid of the hospital, saying “if you look at our state, it has so many professors even in the medical field but yet, we cannot boast of a befitting teaching hospital.” He said “that is why you see that many of our people don’t come home. If you are working in a teaching hospital in Ibadan, Lagos or Kano, what would you want to come and do in Ekiti? So, we thought that if we can develop our own, then some of our people that are even outside the country would be encouraged to come home. And when they do, they would bring their wealth, even wealth of experience to develop the place.”
The CMD said “we have a mandate that Ekiti State must develop and nobody will come to develop it for us. We give kudos to government, both past and present for what they have done here. But beyond this, the political stability that we have now has greatly helped.” He also said that the CONHESS and CONMESS being paid by the state government had “attracted numerous experts to the state and that is one of the best things that have helped us in moving forward.”
On the pressure on the hospital resulting from the seeming glut of patients, he said it would be of great help if the state government completed the Oba Rufus Adeyemo Adejugbe General Hospital in Ado Ekiti, saying this would reduce the pressure and congestion in the hospital. He said the quick completion of the hospital would automatically decongest the teaching hospital of patients most of whom should rather seek medical help at the primary and secondary health institutions.
With an alternative general hospital, the experts at the teaching hospital would have more time to attend to critical situations. And this realisation has caused to the hospital establish medical outposts in Igbemo-Ekiti in Irepodun/Ifelodun Local Government Area of the state; Oke Ila in Ado Ekiti and Omuo in Ekiti East local Government Area to help correct the situation. “Our experts go to the rural areas to make their services available to the people at the primary and secondary levels so as to reduce the pressure on the tertiary institution by nipping the problems that could bring them here in the bud,” he said.
He however, expressed joy at the completion of the New Accident and Emergency Unit in the hospital by the Fayemi-led administration, saying the step would reinforce the quality of service there.
Last modified: November 6, 2012