13th August, 2010
The Vice-Chancellor of the University ofÂ Ilorin, Prof. Is-haq Oloyede, has advocated for medical tourism in Nigeria, saying that any attempt to stop it will affect the country’s dream of becoming the choice destination of Medical Tourists in sub-Saharan Africa.
The Vice-Chancellor, who was represented by the new Provost of the College of Health Sciences, University of Ilorin, Prof. A. B. Omotoso, made this observation at the 6th Annual Scientific Conference of the National Postgraduate Medical College of Nigeria (NPMCN).
While speaking on medical tourism, Professor Oloyede, who was also the Chairman of the Conference,Â identified lower cost of health care, immediate availability of procedures, unavailability of services at patientsâ€™ location and opportunity for vacation as some of the motivating factors for medical tourism, adding that globalization, consumerism and information technology are the drivers of medical tourism.
The guest lecturer, Professor Adelola Adeloye, said that medical tourism is not only to seek medical care but to provide good health care to the people.
He also emphasised the need for Nigeria to follow the example of Taiwan and other nations, which do not allow their Head of States to be given medical treatment outside the countries as a policy or strategy towards driving the improvement of the Nigerian health sector.
In his address, the College President, Prof. L.I.D. Kufeji, said that NPMCN is the apex institution of professional postgraduate training in all specialties of medicine and dentistry in Nigeria, adding that the college produced 3,515 graduands during its last convocation.
He identified some areas the college has contributed to health care delivery in Nigeria as â€œaccrediting training institutions for resident doctors, drawing up their curricula to meet acceptable world standards, organising courses, seminars and workshops, training and certifying those trained to produce medical and dental specialistsâ€.
The event was attended by the Kwara State Governor, Dr. Bukola Saraki, who was represented by the Secretary to the State Government, Barrister Saka Isau;Â traditional rulers, including the Emir of Tshoga and Olupo of Ajase Ipo, academics and medical practitioners from across Nigeria.
Highlights of the occasion included a call on the state government to identify the University of Ilorin Dam Site as one of the tourist centres of the state based on the experience of the college members when they were hosted to a luncheon at the site.