Lagos Commissioner for Health, Prof. Akin Abayomi, says the state plans to arrest the perennial challenge of brain drain through its proposed Blueprint For Medical Infrastructure Transformation.
He described the blueprint as the harmonization and digitization of primary to tertiary institutions in the health sector.
Abayomi made the statement while analysing ‘State of Health Facilities and Vaccine Roll-Out Prospect’ on a live TV interview on Wednesday.
“We are about to digitise the whole health sector which will serve as Lagos State Smart Information Platform, to harmonise all the hospital facilities – primary, secondary and tertiary institutions into one network.
“For instance, if you want to refer a patient from primary to any of the secondary tertiary facilities, it just goes automatically without paper works. It will be seamless and fast. It will help us to get more money for our budget,” he said.
According to him, Lagos has a hierarchy of medical infrastructure that cannot be overlooked.
“When you start at the base, we have what is called Primary Care Level. We have just about 300 primary health facilities across the local government areas of Lagos.
“The next layer is what we call the secondary facility like the general hospitals, although we do have some mono-specialists facilities.
“A general hospital will attend to pregnant women, children, surgery, medicine, eyes, ears as well as accident and emergency services.
“A mono-specialist hospital will be like paediatric or infectious disease hospital like we have at Yaba and we are trying to deploy more specialist facilities yearly,” he said.
The commissioner explained further that when the health system is digitised, it would avert unnecessary expenses that could have been incurred during documentation and other logistics.
“When you digitise things, you eliminate wastages and plug leaks in areas where we are losing resources for lack of efficiency.
“It will be nice to see our doctors work on laptops, type in patients’ data and move it from one point to another. It just makes your work environment more comfortable.
“We want our health workers to feel more relaxed in a nice, cozy atmosphere with a digital platform to work with,” he said.
Abayomi said that when a doctor or health worker is well paid and works in a conducive environment, the thought of travelling overseas for greener pasture would not arise.
Continuing, he maintained that a lot of intelligence has gone into the Lagos blueprint.
“It is going to be naturally ventilated with staff and patients flow all designed for maximum efficiency. Moving forward, this is what is going to happen in terms of infrastructure in Lagos.
“You will not easily recognise the health facilities in Lagos in the next few years. They will have a distinct look, feel and it is one of the features we are trying to develop to ensure our medical personnel want to stay at home inside this well-designed infrastructure,” he said.
The commissioner also revealed the state government’s plan to construct an infectious disease research centre in Yaba as well as rehabilitation and upgrading of General Hospital, Odan in Lagos Island before the year runs out.
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