Tuesday, February 27, 2024

FMC Keffi: Spearheading Quality, Affordable Healthcare

The medical director, Federal Medical Centre, Keffi, Dr. Yahaya Adamu.
The medical director, Federal Medical Centre, Keffi, Dr. Yahaya Adamu.

Health, often equated with wealth, forms the bedrock of societal prosperity. The absence of robust health in any society leads to a decline in wealth. The World Health Organization (WHO) constitution, established in 1946, defines health as a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being, emphasising that it is not merely the absence of disease or infirmity. WHO asserts that every human being, irrespective of race, religion, political belief, economic or social condition, has the fundamental right to enjoy the highest attainable standard of health. Recognising the importance of health to individuals and society, governments prioritise national development based on the health of their citizens.

Despite the global acknowledgment that health is indeed wealth, Nigeria, like many parts of the world, has witnessed the neglect of the health sector across various facets of citizens’ lives. The lack of functional healthcare systems has led to calls from stakeholders urging policymakers to address issues of poor funding and corruption, especially in the post-COVID-19 era. Public health is a crucial element of national security, not only providing medical care but also monitoring, tracking, and controlling disease outbreaks. The Nigerian healthcare system has faced numerous infectious disease outbreaks year after year, highlighting the urgent need for comprehensive solutions.

In Nigeria, the responsibility for healthcare service delivery rests on the local, state and federal government levels. Primary healthcare falls under the local government, secondary healthcare under the state government and tertiary healthcare within the authority of the Federal Government. In 1999, the Federal Government, under President Olusegun Obasanjo’s administration, established at least one tertiary health institution, a federal medical centre (FMC), in each state, with particular attention given to states without a Federal University Teaching Hospital. These centres are tasked with providing essential health services, conducting research and training healthcare professionals. Presently, there are 22 federal medical centres in Nigeria, including the Federal Medical Centre (FMC), Keffi.

Established in April 2000 on the premises of the former General Hospital Keffi, by the administration of the Olusegun Obasanjo administration, FMC Keffi had its official handover on April 28, 2000, at the Federal Ministry of Health. Dr. Danjuma Sulai served as its pioneer medical director and chief executive. FMC Keffi envisions becoming a centre of excellence in healthcare delivery, sustained by dedication to duty, unity of purpose and respect for humanity. Its mission is to utilise available resources judiciously and efficiently, achieving remarkable optimum results characteristic of high professionalism.

FMC Keffi, guided by core values of excellence, integrity, accountability and commitment, has consistently provided services that impact the lives of citizens, instilling hope in the community. Under the leadership of Dr. Yahaya Baba Adamu, who assumed office in July 2018 as the chief medical director, the centre has pursued professionalism, technological advancement and a commendable workforce. Adamu, a trained surgeon from the West African College of Surgeons’ Sackler Faculty of Medicine and Tel Aviv, Israel, has steered FMC Keffi with a vision aimed at promoting health for the social and physical needs of society.

In the last three and a half years, FMC Keffi has maintained a high level of professional practice, embracing modern healthcare delivery practices. The centre, through Adamu’s leadership, has implemented innovative solutions, added new services and invested in staff development and infrastructure. The achievements include breakthrough surgeries, expansion of clinical services and the development of new infrastructure to enhance service delivery.

To guarantee quality health services, FMC Keffi, under Adamu’s leadership, has invested in new medical equipment, constructed additional facilities and initiated training programs for staff. The center’s commitment to excellence is evident in the completion of new laboratory extensions, ward extensions, a dialysis unit, and the provision of modern medical equipment. Adamu’s tenure has witnessed an increase in staff capacity and expertise through various training programs, aligning with the center’s mission to achieve optimum results in healthcare delivery.

FMC Keffi emerges as a beacon of quality and affordable healthcare services in Nigeria. Adamu’s leadership has not only transformed the center into a hub of excellence but has also contributed significantly to the well-being of the community. With continued support from the government and stakeholders, FMC Keffi stands poised to contribute to the realisation of universal health coverage in Nigeria.

In line with the centre’s vision “to emerge as a centre of excellence in healthcare delivery that is sustained by dedication to duty, unity of purpose and respect to humanity”, Adamu’s three and-a-half years at the helm have been marked by remarkable achievements. Despite being confronted with the most dreaded pandemic in the history of humanity, the coronavirus (COVID-19), Adamu’s tenure as the medical director and chief executive of FMC Keffi has witnessed the introduction of innovative services, staff development and the establishment of enduring infrastructures. This period, both pre and post-COVID-19, has been an opportunity for Adamu’s leadership to showcase expertise in protecting and saving lives through commendable innovations.

Under Adamu’s guidance, the facility has achieved monumental breakthroughs in surgeries, showcasing the centre’s commitment to advancing medical science. Notable accomplishments include the successful separation of conjoined twins, the surgical placement of a permanent transvenous dual-chamber pacemaker device, and knee replacement surgery. Equally commendable are the new clinical services introduced in cardiothoracic surgery, neurosurgery, minimal access surgery and spinal surgery.

Since May 2018, FMC Keffi has significantly enhanced the capacity and expertise of its staff through various accredited training programmes. These programmes cover areas such as radiology (accredited by the West African College of Surgeons), family dentistry (accredited by the National Post-Graduate Medical College of Nigeria), orthopaedic, pathology and anaesthesia (awaiting accreditation). Over 100 staff members have been sponsored to undergo impactful training programmes in medical physics, BSc. nursing, epidemiology, ENT, psychiatry nursing, anaesthesia, among others. Adamu’s administration has made historic strides by employing two consultants in dentistry for the first time, establishing licensed radiation safety officers and medical physicists, as well as welcoming a neuro-surgeon to the team.

In the last three and-a-half years, FMC Keffi has witnessed the development of new infrastructure, solidifying its commitment to delivering quality health services. The completion of the new laboratory extension complex, ward extension and dialysis unit equipped with ultramodern facilities has bolstered the centre’s capabilities. The VIP ward, new burns unit and upgrades in facilities within the accident and emergency department demonstrate a dedication to providing top-notch healthcare. Additionally, the reconstruction of the ICU facility, creation of a trauma unit and the modernisation of the boardroom with state-of-the-art public address systems are achievements worth noting.

Adamu’s leadership has ensured the construction of the family dentistry unit, side labs in the GOPD and cashier cubicles, addressing challenges and enhancing the efficiency of medical services. The construction of five Industrial Boreholes has alleviated the problem of inadequate water supply, critical for seamless medical services at the centre. The ongoing projects, such as the multi-specialist clinic, isolation and treatment centre (through NCDC Intervention), expansion of the theatre pharmacy and the construction of new buildings for budget planning and statistics offices, underscore FMC Keffi’s commitment to continual improvement.

The acquisition of new medical equipment further attests to FMC Keffi’s pursuit of excellence. Cutting-edge devices such as the C-arm fluoroscopy machine, anaesthetic machine, operating theatre lamps, co-cardiograph enabled sonoscope ultrasound and other modern equipment have been introduced. The installation of CCTV in the accident and emergency ward enhances security and surveillance, ensuring a safer healthcare environment.

The Federal Medical Centre (FMC), Keffi, Nasarawa State, stands as a paragon of healthcare excellence, dedicated to its vision of becoming a centre of excellence sustained by dedication to duty, unity of purpose and respect for humanity.

Adamu’s leadership has been instrumental in transforming FMC Keffi into a hub of innovation and efficiency, even amid the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. With continued support from the government and stakeholders, FMC Keffi is poised to contribute significantly to the realisation of universal health coverage in Nigeria.

Abantlehe, a healthcare analyst, wrote in from Abuja. He can be reached on comrademartinsaban@gmail.com.

Comrade Martins Abantlehe
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