How the State Government Proactive Interventions curbed the second Wave of the Covid-19 pandemic and limited fatalities –Prof. Akin Abayomi.
Lagos State Government is overhauling infrastructure across all levels of its healthcare delivery system, Commissioner for Health, Prof. Akin Abayomi has said at the Y2021 Ministerial Press Briefing held at the Bagauda Kaltho Press Centre, Secretariat, Alausa, to commemorate the second anniversary of the Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu-led administration,
The Commissioner in his stewardship of the Ministry’s activities in the last two years said upgrade of infrastructure began last year, following the approval of the plan by the Executive Council and that Government is overhauling infrastructures across all levels of its healthcare delivery system.
The event held at the Bagauda Kaltho Press Centre in Alausa, Abayomi explained that the infrastructure roadmap was being executed by the ministry’s Medical Project Implementation Unit (MPIU) in phases, revamping facilities across primary, secondary and tertiary healthcare sectors. He said the overhaul was part of a strategy to build a resilient healthcare in Lagos and increase residents’ access to quality universal health coverage.
He said the Executive Council had also approved the construction of new hospitals to bridge gaps in access and services in the health sector. This, he said, is in tandem with the determination of the Sanwo-Olu administration to achieve the goals set in the Health and Environment pillar of its T.H.E.M.E.S Agenda.
Abayomi said the effort would bring about fit-for-purpose healthcare facilities that would raise the government’s capacity to respond to contemporary and future health challenges. The renewal is being carried out in short, medium- and long-term bases, he said.
Abayomi also disclosed that work had begun on the blueprint designs for Comprehensive Health Center, Primary Health Center and Health Posts as part of the move to rejig their operations and service delivery. This, he said, will help in adding significant bed capacity to Lagos State’s healthcare infrastructure.
While noting that the promotion and protection of the health of residents of Lagos State has a positive impact on social development and quality of life of citizens, Abayomi disclosed that the government embarked on the greenfield medical infrastructure projects to prevent issues noticed in health infrastructure across all levels of care. He added that all issues in medical health infrastructure will disappear when the medical infrastructure blueprint strategy is fully implemented.
“The continuous improvement in quality of health service in the State is a core mandate of our administration and we are uniquely positioned to utilize available resources to actualize this goal. With the ongoing refurbishment and roll out of new infrastructure blueprint, the medical infrastructure landscape of the State would look completely different, giving us a step closer to achieving universal health coverage,” he stated.
The Commissioner averred the medical infrastructure blueprint agenda would address the issue of brain drain, medical travels and patient welfare. The government, through the strategy, hopes to attract medical tourism to the State, he added.
“The prototype of the new, remodelled and upgraded healthcare infrastructure in the State will conform with key elements of global standards health facility designs, which include Natural Light/Ventilation, Sustainable Energy, Patient Flow, Infection Prevention, Noise Prevention, Flood Prevention, Identifiable standout visual features as well as scalability and modular design for expansion,” Abayomi stated.
The second wave of the Coronavirus (COVID-19), which spread more rapidly across Lagos State than the first wave, would have been devastating in Nigeria, but for efforts deployed by the government, the Commissioner said. He said the response strategy put in place by Governor Sanwo-Olu efficiently curtailed the pandemic and limited fatalities.
The Commissioner said the effectiveness of the State’s response strategy saved the country from negative impacts associated with the pandemic’s second wave as seen in other countries. He added that EKO TELEMED – a tech-driven platform through which the State Government managed the spread of the virus – yielded efficient results in breaking the cycle of community infection.
The Commissioner said there was an ongoing effort by the State Government to prevent a third wave of the pandemic, noting that Lagos has started the deployment of EKO TELEMED in the management of in-bound international travellers from high burdened countries. The tech-driven platform, Abayomi said, would be used to monitor movement and treat infected travellers.