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Plateau: The Untold Changes In Healthcare Delivery



Plateau hospital

The quiet story of the changes in the well-being of the citizenry on the Plateau is well reflected in the quiet changes unfolding in the health sector in the state.

Indeed, it is a common saying that health is wealth; only a healthy person can work, create wealth, and contribute to the economy at all levels.

A healthy population is key to economic development, any government that wants to build a virile economy has to pay attention to the health of its citizens, and this is what the Plateau State Governor, Caleb Mutfwang has been doing since he came on board a year ago.

During his campaigns, the Governor had anticipated a healthy citizenry hence he listed the health sector as one of the key areas his administration would give attention to.

He stated the agenda would involve the rehabilitation, re-equipment, and staffing of government health institutions; provide a referral hospital in the State, and ensure proper regulation of private health facilities for the good of citizens.

On coming on board, the Governor among other interventions in the sector, appointed a seasoned Paediatrician, and a former Plateau State Nigerian Medical Association, NMA Chairman, Professor Christopher Yilgwan as the Chief Medical Director, CMD of the Plateau State Specialist Hospital Jos to reposition the hospital for improved healthcare delivery.

The Governor met some unfinished projects in the hospital that were commissioned by the previous administration, he had directed that they be completed for optimum value addition.

The Governor speaks:

He said, “Before we came on board, there were only two specialists in the Plateau Specialist Hospital. They were doing O&G and Family Medicine but we have approved four additional specialists – Paediatrics, Surgery, Internal Medicine, and another.

“We are in the process of recruiting 22 Consultants to improve the services in the hospital. We are looking at the entire spectrum of the healthcare sector starting from Primary Healthcare where we have funded the Primary Healthcare Development Board to carry out its basic functions, hoping for more interventions.

“For the Secondary Healthcare, we are preparing to give it attention, most of the hospitals Shendam, Langtang, Pankshin, Mangu, and Barkin Ladi had contracts awarded during the Jang administration. For whatever reasons, they were not touched during Lalong’s administration.”

He added, “We are looking at reviving the contracts so that the hospitals can come back to life. We are making ad hoc interventions, in some of the services at the Plateau Specialist Hospital we had to bring in the private sector to manage because of the lack of personnel.

“There are many medical specialties we don’t have, there is no single indigene that is a Physiotherapist. I was told of one indigene that is a Dental Surgeon but he is not in the State at the moment and this is embarrassing. We have only eight Veterinary Doctors from the State.

“We have fallen behind in many respects and we need to double up. We are working to ensure Plateau State University starts a Medical Faculty and we are looking at the possibility of redesigning the Plateau Specialists Hospital…”  

The CMD Too  

The CMD of State Specialists Hospital, Professor Yilgwan who has barely spent a year in office noted that the Governor is laying a solid foundation for healthcare delivery.

He said the Governor approved an improved health hazard allowance for medical workers, paid outstanding salaries, expanded the Residency training in Internal medicine, Obstetrics, and Gynaecology, Surgery, and Paediatrics, and procured 100 hospital beds, mattresses, and pillows.

Professor Yilgwan stressed, “The Governor also approved the award of contract for the supply and installation of Main Laboratory equipment of the newly constructed Laboratory complex, payment of outstanding funds for the Radio-diagnostic centre, approved the deployment and installation of Electronic Medical Records, EMR project which is ongoing.

“These and other achievements demonstrate the importance the Governor attaches to the healthcare sector. These have motivated us more as we pledge our unflinching support for “the Time is Now” administration. This administration has rekindled the hope of the citizens that a better and brighter future lies ahead.”

A patient, Stella Obiakor who came for a scan at the Plateau Specialists’ hospital expressed delight at the improvement in health delivery saying “I was taken aback to see the improvement, the environment is very clean and the service has improved. I like what I am seeing and I pray they maintain it.”

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