We must end medical tourism – Osinbajo

The Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo (SAN), has harped on the need for Nigeria to halt the trend of outbound medical tourism in a bid to ensure economic growth.

According to a statement issued by Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity Office of the Vice President, Mr Laolu Akande, Professor Osinbajo stated this on Thursday during his virtual remarks at the official unveiling of the Evercare Hospital in Lekki, Lagos.

Professor Osinbajo also said investments in top medical care and the overall healthcare sector in Nigeria will result in the emergence of “the fastest growing areas in a resurgent Nigerian economy”.

Evercare Hospital, part of the Evercare Group, operates as an integrated healthcare delivery platform in emerging markets across Africa and South Asia, including India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Kenya and Nigeria. The international group has set aside a $1billion healthcare fund.

“The business case for more top quality medical care in Nigeria has always seemed quite obvious, but I think the fact that the Evercare Health Fund, (a US$ 1 billion emerging markets healthcare fund) has chosen to invest in healthcare in Nigeria, clearly confirms even to the greatest skeptics that we are seeing the birth of what may well become one of the fastest growth areas in a resurgent Nigerian economy,” Prof. Osinbajo submitted.

Speaking on the importance of having such a medical institution in Nigeria, the Vice President observed that “we must reverse the trend of outbound medical tourism” and there is the need to “attract, not just medical tourists from our neighbors in the region, but also become the place of choice for even developed countries’ medical tourists looking to jump long queues for specialized procedures at home.”

He also emphasized that the emergence of the Evercare Hospital would bring about a U-turn in the brain drain of medical personnel trained in Nigeria who are engaged in hospitals abroad because of better remuneration and better facilities.

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