The Senate, on Thursday, called for the upgrade of the State House Clinic to check medical tourism.
Chairman, Senate Committee on Federal Character and Inter-governmental Affairs, Sen. Danjuma La’ah, made the call when the State House Permanent Secretary, Tijani Umar, appeared before the panel to defend the 2021 budget.
La’ah said that the committee would consider the budget for the State House Clinic; adding that the clinic needed to be more active in its operations.
“We must ensure our hospitals are fully equipped to a world-class standard.
“So that no matter the issue of an emergency our hospitals should be endowed with that capacity to attend to them before flying out if the need arises,” he said.
He said that the proposal for the State House Clinic of N1.3 billion had already been approved.
“I want this thing done and the credit goes to the entire members of the committee.
“We want to leave a legacy that the clinic we requested is built in the State House within the shortest time frame. That is our primary concern and we must do it at all costs,” he said.
The Permanent Secretary, in an interview after the meeting with the lawmakers, said that “I took over in the State House in April this year and in the last six months; we have made giant strides in almost every aspect of our work.“We have outlined a lot of things trying to put it on the right pedestal, so it is not correct to say that it is comatose, it is not.
“We have realigned so many things. One of the fundamental challenges we have dealt with is the sustainable supply of drugs and consumables.
“Don’t forget that this derives from the budget. You have a budget and you have a sustainable supply, if the budget is not sufficient it affects everything.
“What we have on the ground now is something we can use to stabilize the State House Clinic and this is what we have achieved, stability in the supply of consumables, stability in the supply of electricity.“Stability in motivating our doctors and all our medical professionals, stability in infrastructure renovation, upgrade and maintenance of the facility, and our equipment.
“What we can do with the resources right now is all that, just to maintain and to try to hold on to what we have until the new budget comes on stream,” he said.