Deplorable road affecting patronage in Ekwulobia General hospital – Doctor

Authorities of the Ekwulobia General hospital in Aguata Local Government Area of Anambra state has decried low patronage being experienced in the facility occasioned by the deplorable condition of the road leading to the hospital.

The Doctor in charge of the hospital, Dr. Arinze Ugochukwu who stated this yesterday while fielding questions from newsmen during the commissioning of Covid-19 protective isolation centre at the hospital, also blamed ignorance of the residents of the area to the existence of the facility on the ugly experience.

He however expressed hope of the soon repair of the road following assurances by the government.

He said, “Patronage has not been encouraging, partly because the access to the hospital has been very bad for the past three to four years, as well as the community’s ignorance of the existence of the hospital in the area.

“We hope to increase awareness so that members of the community will know that such facility exist and functioning with qualified personnel, so they will start visiting, not just for Covid-19, instead of private hospitals.

“We also encourage staff to be up and doing, at the same time discipline erring ones to serve as deterrents to others.”

Expressing appreciation to the bank for the gesture, Arinze pledged the hospital’s commitment to ensuring adequate maintainance of the facility.

“Even though we pray no case of Covid-19 is recorded, we are prepared and ready to manage any form of emergency,” he added.

Earlier during the commissioning, Governor Willie Obiano who was represented by his Deputy, Dr. Nkem Okeke, said the facility, powered by the Fidelity Bank, was to ensure Covid-19 patients were properly taken care of.
He said although the state prayed it did not record more cases of Covid-19, but noted that it was necessary the facility was put in place in readiness for any eventuality.

He said, I’m here to commission the facility in Ekwulobia General hospital on behalf of his Excellency, Chief Willie Obiano which is part of the hospitals he is renovating, not just for Covid-19, but to ensure full functioning of the hospital.

“You can see massive renovation going on. It’s part of the work the governor is embarking on as his tenure is gradually winding up.

“This facility will ensure Covid-19 patients are properly taken care of. We thank the Fidelity Bank who sponsored the renovation and equipped it, including the air-conditioning.

“We pray that no more cases of Covid-19 will be recorded in the state. But we need to be ready for any eventuality so we won’t be stranded.

“If you observe, we have such facility in all the zones in the state, we have one in Onitsha, Nnewi, Amaku, Mbaukwu and now in Ekwulobia. We’re ready because of the capacity we’ve built.”

The commissioner of Health, Dr. Vincent Okpala said the 50-bed capacity facility
renovated and equiped by Fidelity Bank had the capacity of effective caring of patients.

He thanked the bank for her generosity, describing it as a demonstration of brotherliness.

“We are here to witness the handover of the protective centre at Ekwulobia General hospital, a 50 bed capacity facility renovated by Fidelity with oxygen concentrators, mobilizers, and other machines that will help in the fight.

“We now have a balance of isolation centres in the state, two in the North, two in the South and two in the Central. With this in place, people in this area no longer need to travel to Onitsha or Nnewi for treatment.

“Having personnel and infrastructure is key, but people must have to keeping the COVID-19 protocols in the state, including wearing of face masks, washing of hands and social distancing to ensure our facilities are not overstretched.”

On the deplorable condition of the access road to the hospital, the commissioner assured that the challenge would soon be history as the road had been awarded, promising soon commencement of work.

“The attention of the governor has been drawn to it and he has graciously awarded the contract. We hope the rain does not impede the speed,” he added.

On his part, the Regional Bank Head, Awka, Henry Asiegbu said the gesture was part of the bank’s Corporate Social Responsibility of giving back to the society.

He said, “Fidelity has always partnered with the state government as the major bank in the state, we give back to the society as part of our corporate social responsibility.

“We are happy with what the state government is doing for us and that is why we have decided to set up this protective centre.

“We’ve done similar thing in some other states where some got cash but here we decided to renovate the hospital and get it properly equipped, Obiano approved it and the hand over is being done today.”

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