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Stakeholders urge FG to prioritise forex for sick Nigerians

Nigeria builds its healthcare infrastructure, HBG has offered to take care of Nigerian patients in the interim. The hurdle that patients are facing today, is the increasing cost of travel due to dollar devaluation and non-availability of forex.

The Principal Consultant, HBG Medical Assistance, Varun Aggarwal, has called on the Federal Government to prioritise the forex needs of sick people.

Aggarwal made this call at a stakeholder’s forum organized by OTIUM ‘R’ Us Limited, tagged, “Adding Friendship To Healthcare” in Lagos.

According to him, many Nigerian patients are presently facing challenges to pay for their medical treatment abroad.

Aggarwal also advised Nigerians seeking treatment in India to make the right consultations before embarking on such medical trips.

This, he said, would ensure that they were not exploited.

He noted that patients who do not make inquiries before they travel often ended up stranded in India.

Apart from patients, Aggarwal noted, doctors who also wanted to travel to India for training must ensure they seek such services in hospitals that had specialists for such purposes.

He said,“ Forex is a big issue right now for patients who need to travel abroad for treatment. Many patients who are sick can’t travel. We understand the situation. That is why those who get these funds must get the best treatment at the most affordable price.

“Going through the right channel will ensure that you spend less in India. ”

Also speaking at the event, the Chief Operating Officer, OTIUM’R’US, Ifedayo Andrew-Ogunbayo, said many advanced treatments in areas of organ failure, cancer was not offered in Nigeria; hence the reason why patients sometimes traveled abroad for surgery.

Ogunbayo said the organization was committed to ensuring that Nigerians were not exploited by unskilled persons abroad.

She said, “Nigerians, no matter where they are, should be able to access quality health care at a more cost-effective and affordable international medical assistance. We help patients to negotiate customized medical assistance packages based on their budget and needs.”

Source: Today, Dated: August 15, 2016

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