Emeka Nwaogaraku

The calls by Imo Indigenes to the Federal Government to upgrade the Federal Medical Centre, Owerri to a Teaching Hospital have received a boost by the Honourable Minister of State, Health, Dr Senator Adeleke Mamora. The Health Minister of State has advised the Management of the Medical Centre to initiate the process which he sees as a legitimate one to upgrade the Facility to a Teaching Hospital.

He made the remarks during his inauguration of some of completed facilities by the Management, led by Dr Kingsley Achigbu. The Minister of State acknowledged that the Centre was one of the largest and busiest in the country and was pleased that it had transformed itself into a first-class health institution. “The request to upgrade it to a Teaching Hospital is overdue,” he said, charging the Management and the State Government to push it through.

Dr. Mamora commended the Centre for priding itself with Medical and Health experts who can compete effectively with their counterparts anywhere in the world. He described the commissioned facilities as an evidence of prudent management of scarce resources and harmonious working relationship.

The Board Chairman, Dr Senator Salman Adebayo, in his remarks, opined that the feats recorded by the Medical Director are the result of good working relationship between him and his team.

Earlier, the Medical Director, Dr Kingsley Achigbu, appealed to the Minister to upgrade the Centre to a Teaching Hospital as it had improved in standard, scope and service delivery. “For the FMC, we deserve an upgrade to a Teaching Hospital. Recently, this has been made more desirable with the NUC approval of the Federal University of Technology, Owerri, Medical School,” he pointed out.

Dr Achigbu explained that the Medical Centre offers primary, secondary and tertiary care which renders services to about six states with over 7 million population. He also said that through internal sourcing, collaborative efforts and capital provisions, the management has been able to replace stolen, vandalised or damaged equipment. On COVID-19 management, the Centre’s response was outstanding and instrumental to the state recording one of the lowest casualty figures in the country, he said.

The FMC, Owerri land Owners led by the Traditional Ruler of Umuororonjo Autonomous Community, Eze Dr. Clinton Uboegbulam, described the Medical Director as an asset to the hospital. To show their appreciation, they donated a large expanse of land to the Centre, preparatory to it being a Teaching Hospital.

Facilities inaugurated by the Honourable Minister of State, Health, include: Dialysis Centre, MRI, Research Centre, Isolation Complex, 33 KVA Project Neurosurgical Ward and an Outreach Centre at Njaba L.G.A of the State, amongst others.