By Egufe Yafugborhi
GOVERNOR Nyesom Wike says his administration is focused on delivering world-class health facilities in Rivers state to reverse the narrative of medical tourism overseas in Nigeria.
Wike, shortly after inspecting the progress of work at Dr. Peter Odili Cancer and Cardiovascular Disease Diagnostic and Treatment Centre in Port Harcourt, said he hasn’t traveled out of Rivers for medical treatment since the establishment of the state Government House Clinic.
He said, “The facility at the Government House Clinic has reduced the level of people traveling overseas. Look at me, I’ve not traveled since 2019 because we have the best equipment that to take care of whatever is diagnosed.
“The Dr. Peter Odili Cancer and Cardiovascular Disease Diagnostic and Treatment Centre will reduce the time our people spend going overseas to spend money. Again, it will reduce deaths related to cancer and heart diseases.
“Most of our people have died as a result of heart diseases, not being able to diagnose it on time. You ask yourself, how many people have money to travel overseas? Even when it’s diagnosed, having the money to travel overseas becomes a problem.
“So to us, it will act as medical tourism. It will earn foreign currency for us. People will come from outside Nigeria. Just like we travel overseas all the time.
“It’ll be first of its kind in Nigeria, if not in Sub-Sahara Africa. Again, it is to give our people the best in terms of health care system. We are quite happy with what we are giving to our people.
“We made promises to the people, brought the Minister of Health to lay the foundation stone of this cancer centre. God willing, next year, we will bring back the Minister of Health to commission this facility.”