Sunday, January 23

US, others committed to improving public health in Nigeria – Amb. Leonard

United States Ambassador, Mary Beth Leonard has high­lighted the U.S. Government’s commitment as well as Varian’s efforts to significantly improve public health outcomes in Nigeria.

While delivering remarks at a reception in honor of Varian, Leonard noted that the United States continues to lead the world in med­ical research, innovation and technology, provid­ing solutions to tackle the scourge of cancer through medical devices developed by American companies.

She commended the Nigeria Sovereign Investment Au­thority-Lagos University Cancer Centre (NLCC) and the Marcelle Ruth Cancer Centre (MRCC) for sharing in the vision of improved cancer care in Nigeria and investing in cancer diagno­sis and treatment facilities equipped with the latest technologies designed and manufactured by Varian.

“Investment in lifesav­ing cancer diagnostic and treatment machines will improve outcomes for Nigerians,” Ambassador Leonard said. “Addition­ally, this investment at home will reduce instanc­es of medical tourism and increase the capacities for medical service provid­ers.”

Also speaking, the Varian’s Head of Gov­ernment Affairs and Market Development for Europe, Middle East and Africa, Dr. Kevin Massou­di, explained that Varian has been investing heavily in Africa and that Nigeria is of particular impor­tance given the high can­cer incidence and mortal­ity rates.

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Massoudi noted that technolo­gies such as those Varian manufactures are critical in the fight against cancer and that Nigeria current­ly has significantly low access to these treatment opportunities.

Quoting World Health Organization statistics, Massoudi expressed con­cern that cancer incidence and cancer related deaths could almost double in Ni­geria by 2040.

“The medical technolo­gy to save lives exists. We need to ensure that those in greatest need obtain ac­cess. Where we live should not determine if we live.

“We recognize that we must all intensify our ef­forts to defeat this dramat­ically increasing cancer burden.”  

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