The likable wife of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria took ill not long and she was told to jump on the next available flight to London to be treated medically. While she was briefly playing to the gallery at a meeting in Abuja, she told the whole world that she refused to be flown abroad. I do have an idea of why she refused to be flown abroad. She probably refused to be flown abroad simply because what was wrong with her was not life threatening! If it was life-threatening, she would have told whoever in charge of the medical treatment of the first family to fly her as a bird to either London or Germany.
What if the Britons never developed their health-sector like ours, where would they have taken Mr. President to when he took ill? It is a big shame that a 57year old nation is still toying with the healthcare system of her precious citizens. There are too many Nigerians, who die needless deaths daily. The only peccadillo they committed was to be born in a nation that does not plan and care a hoot for their health.
When the regrettable news about the clinic on the inside of Aso Rock jumped out as a smoked rat would jump out of a hole on a farm, I was not moved one bit. I was not surprised that the ‘celebrated’ treatment center does not have common syringe! You know why? It is because the same ineffective, corrupt and feeble system drives everything in our dear country. If there is no order on our dusty streets, do not expect to find it in the highest place in our polity. If there is lawlessness on our streets, get ready to find it on the inside of the highest place in the land. Also, whatever the poor cannot access will equally live beyond the reach of the rich. This is why our politicians are fond of traveling outside the country, even to treat headache!Why am I writing the way I am writing right now? I am writing this
Why am I writing the way I am writing right now? I am writing this way, because I have been to so many hospitals in Nigeria and I do have a first-hand experience within the context of what the masses are daily going through in a nation that is called “the giant of Africa.” The last time I was on the inside of a hospital, I said to those who were with me on that day that if they could afford to travel beyond the shores of Nigeria for medical treatments that they should please do so.
A few years back, one of my friends took his wife to one of our hospitals. He dropped off his darling wife at the hospital and quickly dashed to the office to go take care of an urgent and important task that he was not allowed to delegate. He dropped some money with his wife and a few minutes after he got to his office, he called her to know if the wife had been attended to or not. The wife told him that she was still at the reception—waiting to be attended to. An hour later, the story remained the same. Some hours later, the status quo was maintained. My friend ultimately left his office and met his wife the same way he left her in the morning! When he got there and saw his wife in an excruciating pain, he was strained and forced to make some noise. After a one-man drama was performed for them by a man who was not an actor, his wife was wheeled inside an operating room and the rest they say is history. Make an effort to travel round our greatly valued country and you’d find out that the story is the same.Each time this ‘non-didactic’ issue and other raging national issues are raised, the first thing our professional politicians would say is: “you know that we are still young as a nation. With time, we would get it right. You know America, German, England…have been around for so long a time…” Each time I am told something as this, I am always very barmy. Do we need to be 800years old as a nation before we can be able to install an excellence-driven health-care system to take a good care of our people? Do we need to re-invent the wheel? Can’t we just copy the way the Germans are doing theirs and adopt and implement it here? Instead of shamelessly
Each time this ‘non-didactic’ issue and other raging national issues are raised, the first thing our professional politicians would say is: “you know that we are still young as a nation. With time, we would get it right. You know America, German, England…have been around for so long a time…” Each time I am told something as this, I am always very barmy. Do we need to be 800years old as a nation before we can be able to install an excellence-driven health-care system to take a good care of our people? Do we need to re-invent the wheel? Can’t we just copy the way the Germans are doing theirs and adopt and implement it here? Instead of shamelessly traveling to countries—where their own health-care systems are working, can’t we reproduce here what is making their countries work?
In 1970, Oman’s health care system was not performing well just as ours is not performing well right now. The child mortality rate was very high. But major government investments have proved to be successful in improving system performance. Oman’s success in recent times shows that tremendous strides can be accomplished in a relatively short period of time. How did Oman move from where they were to where they are today in a context of the excellence-driven health-care system? Instead of wasting scarce resources to send people to both Jerusalem and Saudi Arabia, let us send some of our intelligent men and women to Oman to understudy them and reproduce it in Nigeria. It can be done, on the condition that we are serious as a people.