By Folashade Amole.
“This is marvellous, commendable and a practical step towards improving access to specialised care by Nigerians”. This was the remark by Dr Sanni Balarabe, the CEO of Regional Centre for Oral Health and the chairman of board of Trustee of CLEFT & CRANIOFACIAL DEFORMITY FOUNDATION (CFDF), when he visited the site today after presiding over the board meeting of the foundation. He commented further ‘’My visit today reveals that the project is real and it is on ground. It took us about an hour to drive to the site through a well tarred road along Karshi axis of Abuja. Visible structures on the site includes perimeter fencing, a 4-bedroom apartment, block making machine and a borehole for water supply. With this level of seriousness demonstrated by the management, the project is achievable and is worth supporting.’’
Abuja Craniofacial Hospital for the Needy is the initiative of CLEFT & CRANIOFACIAL DEFORMITY FOUNDATION, a non-profit organisation, with focus on the care of less privileged afflicted with diseases causing facial deformities. The proposed hospital is a complex consisting of the administrative/Accident & Emergency, the theatre, the Male/Female wards, the private ward/guest house and ancillary buildings. The hospital project is estimated to cost 400million naira to be funded by the public. According to the Executive Director of the foundation, Dr Seidu Bello, the project is gigantic but achievable. When completed, it will provide access to the less privileged while the wealthy patients will also have an option of accessing quality care within the country. It will also serve as a training centre for advanced knowledge and a referral centre in Africa.
The organisation was registered about 10 years ago and has so far operated on over 3,000 patients with major facial diseases for free, with plans to do more as funds are available.