FMC Keffi conducts open heart surgeries on 14 indigent patients

Gov. Abdullahi Sule of Nasarawa has described as a rare feat the open heart surgeries which the Federal Medical Centre (FMC), Keffi, Nasarawa, had on 14 indigent pediatric patients suffering from different heart ailments.

Sule, in his remarks on Monday after a tour of the operation theatre and the intensive care unit, lauded the management of hospital.

Represented by his deputy, Dr Emmanuel Akabe,  the governor called for the feat to be sustained.

“I am quite impressed with what I heard and what I have seen. I have thanked the team handling this project for what they are doing in Nasarawa State.

The governor, who called for more collaboration with other organisations to complement government’s effort in healthcare delivery, said that his administration would support the health facility to enable it to succeed.

Similarly, Dr Yahaya Adamu,  the Chief Medical Director (CMD) of the medical centre, said the project, which started on April 28, 2023, would be concluded on May 26 with more surgeries to be carried out.

He, however, said that so far 14 surgeries had been successfully done on 14 indigent paediatric patients suffering from varying heart diseases.

The CMD appreciated “Hospitals For Humanity“, an international non-governmental organisation, for collaborating with the hospital in carrying out the surgeries.

He also praised the combined efforts of paediatric surgeons, nurses and other health specialists in the health centre for the success achieved so far.

“This is the second phase of the project. We started the first phase on April 28. The team that did the first set of surgeries came from Saudi Arabia. They were volunteers, they did theirs and left.

“Now we have a second set of team from the US and India. So far, in this second phase we have done five surgeries. In the first phase we did nine surgeries. We hope to do more before the project is concluded on May 26,” he said.

Adamu explained that the ailments suffered by the patients included various anomalies within the heart, as well as both simple and complex cases.

He listed the diseases to include ventricular septal defect, double chamber right ventricle and a patient who had a device placed somewhere in his body but moved to his heart.

Adamu said that the medical centre planned to collaborate with the state government and well-meaning Nigerians to fund the project.

He also said that there were plans by the health centre to develop capacity through periodical heart surgeries thereby affording the surgeons the opportunity to perfect the skills learnt from foreign partners for the benefit of Nigerians.

Meanwhile, Dr Myna Shegos, Executive Director, Hospitals for Humanity, Geogia, US disclosed that the organisation had been in Nigeria since 2021.

Shegos explained that the organisation  had been operating in the Garki General Hospital, Abuja; Jos University Teaching Hospital (JUTH), Plateau;  Ibom Specialist Hospital and University of Uyo Teaching Hospital; Akwa Ibom State.

She said that the organisation was focused on providing free pediatric open heart surgeries and cardiac catheterisation for children. (NAN)

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