The First Lady of Nigeria, Aisha Buhari, has lamented the wide gap in cardiac surgery and care in Nigeria, calling for improved investment from the government and the private sector.
She spoke during a luncheon in honour of beneficiaries of the recent cardiac mission organised by the Aisha Buhari Foundation on Wednesday at the State House, Abuja.
Mrs Buhari called on the government to subsidise the high cost of cardiac interventions and spend more on personnel training and the procurement of equipment.
“A year ago, I conceived the idea of providing free heart surgeries and interventions to Nigerians in need of such care. Through my organisation, the Aisha Buhari Foundation, we partnered with an international surgical team, the Federal Medical Centre, Jabi, Abuja, and other institutions to fulfil this dream,” she said.
The First Lady said the mission targetted the needy, especially those children with critical heart conditions, to give them hope for a fulfilled life, and seeing them fully recovered and revived to good health served as motivation to do more.
She thanked the medical personnel for their effort and sacrifices both during and after the mission.
In his message, the Chief Medical Director of the Federal Medical Centre, Jabi Abuja, Saad Ahmed, a professor, applauded the intervention of the First Lady and urged the involvement of more men of goodwill in the sector to reduce the financial burden associated with cardiac surgeries and care, especially for underprivileged Nigeria.
Others who delivered goodwill messages at the event were the CMDs of hospitals that participated during the mission and representatives of the beneficiaries, Murtala Dodo and Ireti Ojo.