Abia State Governor, Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu, has commissioned a Molecular Laboratory & Diagonistic Centre in Aba, for the testing of Covid-19, and an Infectious Disease Hospital with capacity to isolate and treat 50 patients of COVID-19 and other infectious diseases at the same time.
Speaking at the premises of the Aba General Hospital, location of the 16-module GenExpert Laboratory, Governor Ikpeazu commended the patriotic zeal of members of the Abia Development Summit who constructed and donated the building which the state government equipped.
He expressed joy that the facility was built by a coalition of private sector persons from Abia State while the Abia State government supplied the medical equipment for the centre, adding that it would complement the laboratories already in place at Abia State Specialist Hospital and Diagnostic Center, Umuahia.
Speaking also, the Commissioner for Health, Dr. Joe Osuji thanked the Governor for the project, saying that with the brand new laboratory, Abia State has no business taking samples outside the State for testing and informed that the state is surely the only one in the south east region and probably the only one in Nigeria that has deployed the 16-modular GeneXpert equipment which was procured from the United States of America. The health commissioner appreciated Governor Ikpeazu for ensuring that Abia State got a new laboratory and thanked the members of Abia Development Summit that came out to support and partner the government.
In their goodwill messages, Professor Sam Erugu and Prince Chris Odinaka Igwe of Abia Development Summit, a non political organization that assisted in realizing the project, commended the Governor for coming up with the idea of building the facility and described the project as a work in progress. “This is a result of the Governor’s leadership style”, they affirmed and assured that they will continue to support his administration.
The Group thanked the Governor for equipping the facility. and expressed readiness to partner with the government to develop more medical facilities in the state.
Speaking while commissioning the new Infectious Disease Hospital in the Ogbor Hill area of Aba, Governor Ikpeazu who was represented by his Deputy, Rt. Hon. Ude Oko Chukwu, assured of the determination of his administration to continuously improve healthcare facilities in the state to ensure that citizens have access to high quality and affordable healthcare that can match the best available anywhere in the world in terms of equipment and manpower.
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Governor Ikpeazu used the opportunity to once again express appreciation to frontline medics in the state for working tirelessly to break the transmission chain of COVID-19 in the state and assured them of continuing government support and encouragement. He announced that the State Government is also constructing a new Mother & Child Hospital in Aba and Umuahia to further support the efforts of the administration to improve the average life expectancy in the state further above the national average.
He appealed to residents of Aba and its environs to take advantage of the Infectious Disease Hospital/Treatment and Isolation Centre to test for COVID-19 and avail themselves of first class treatment. He further informed that the state’s isolation and treatment facility in Amachara has maintained the lowest mortality rate for Covid-19 in the region and prayed that the Aba facility will achieve even better results.
In his address, the Commissioner for Health, Dr Joe Osuji said the commissioning of the Infectious Disease Hospital equipped with all the ultra modern life saving and support equipment brings to three the number of Covid-19 Isolation and Treatment Centres in the State and urged Abians to continue to observe all the necessary protocols on Covid-19 as listed by health authorities.
Also in their remarks, the Acting Transition Committee Chairman of Aba North, Mrs Joy Iwuchukwu, and the Chairman Aba North Traditional Rulers Council, Eze Sunday Udodirim, appreciated the Governor for establishing the Infectious Disease Hospital in the area and reminded the people that the Covid-19 pandemic is still very much around, hence the need for all to observe all the precautionary measures laid down by government and the NCDC.
The event which featured inspection of facilities in the Hospital by the Governor’s representative attracted the presence of the Secretary to the State Government, Barr Chris Ezem, the Commissioner for Information, Chief John Okiyi Kalu, top government officials, traditional rulers, health personnel and other notable personalities.