Emerging reports indicate that Usmanu Danfodiyo University Teaching Hospital, Sokoto has commenced open heart surgery for cardiac-related ailments.
While briefing newsmen in Sokoto, the State capital, acting Chief Medical Director of the Hospital, Dr Nasir Muhammed disclosed that heart-related diseases are the common problems all over the world and that anything that affects the heart could lead to an untimely death.
He stressed that, over 5,000 people require heart surgery in Sokoto, Kebbi and Zamfara state and that these people are mostly poor who could not afford such treatments.
Before now, the only closest hospital where such operation is available is Nizamiyya hospital in Abuja and the least they can charge is five million Naira (N5000,000) or one has to travel overseas where he can pay double of such funds.
The acting CMD also noted that open heart surgery was capital intensive and that the hospital would charge at least two million (N2000, 000)Naira only depending on the severity of the problem. He then called on the Governments, corporate organizations and wealthy individual to support the programme for its sustainability.
More so, the CMD stressed that Open heart surgery is very expensive because of the kind of material used which majority of the patients cannot afford. In view of that, the need for support of the Government, corporate organizations and wealthy individuals to sustain the programme cannot be overemphasized.
Additionally, the current surgery operation being conducted in the hospital is in collaboration with the King Muhammad VI University Teaching Hospital in Morocco as part of their Memorandum of Understanding with the Nigerian Government.
UDUTH disclosed that it has made a lot of investment on the programme through training of staff both doctors and nurses and equipping the centre with state of the art equipment in addition to signing an MoU with King Muhammad VI University Teaching Hospital, Morocco.
Commenting on the development, Dr Abubakar Umar, a cardiothoracic surgeon of UDUS, said that they had operated on five patients since the commencement of the programme on Sunday 21st April 2019.
Adding that the trial operation was done without any charges on the patients.
Adding that, three of the five patients had their heart valve replaced while others born with an abnormality in their hearts were operated.
The advocated for the inclusion of heart surgery in the National Health Insurance Scheme(NHIS).
On his part, the leader of Morocco’s team, Professor Boumzevra Drissi, a cardiovascular surgeon, stated that heart disease was one of the major cause of death in the globe and urged people to avoid smoking and excess eating which he said are the major causes of heart diseases.