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Health

Evercare’s $1 billion emerging market health fund will reverse outbound medical tourism – VP Osinbajo

Osinbajo says Evercare’s $1 billion emerging market health fund will reverse the trend of outbound medical tourism.

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The Federal Government has described the Evercare choice to invest its $1 billion emerging market health fund in Nigeria as the birth of what will be one of the fastest-growing in the Nigerian economy.

This was disclosed by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo while commissioning Evercare Hospital in Nigeria.

According to him, the development will help the nation “reverse the trend of outbound medical tourism and become a place of choice for specialised procedure in healthcare.”

READ: Tito Ovia is using technology to drive a revolution in the African healthcare system

He said, “The opening of Evercare Hospital in Nigeria marks an exciting moment for healthcare in Nigeria. This is not just because of the several groundbreaking innovations that come with the package, but perhaps even more for what this holds for the future of medical care in Nigeria and Sub-Saharan Africa as the business landscape for medical care becomes wider.

“The fact that Evercare chose to invest in Nigeria with the Evercare one-billion-dollar ($1 billion) emerging market health fund, truly confirms that we are seeing the birth of what will be one of the fastest-growing areas in the Nigerian economy. This will help us reverse the trend of outbound medical tourism and become a place of choice for specialised procedure in healthcare.”

READ: Nigerians in the US set to attract $3 billion investment into Nigeria

Chairman, Evercare Hospital Lekki, Tosin Runsewe, said: “Evercare Hospital Lekki is determined to transform the healthcare sector by focusing on delivering value-based, and accessible quality care to Nigeria. This project which is impact-based has created hundreds of jobs, thereby positively affecting the economy and nation at large. Evercare Hospital Lekki has no doubt invested in a community of diverse, qualified, and service-driven people to provide the best quality affordable care to its patients.”

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What you should know

  • Some of the investors of the facility are Evercare Group, Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA), and Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation among others.
  • It is a strategic investment on the part of NSIA and others to support the Nigerian healthcare sector by providing quality and accessible healthcare which will help alleviate some of the burden brought on by medical tourism.
  • Evercare’s facility is equipped and designed with modern state-of-the-art infrastructure and diagnostic services, with core focus specialties including Mother & Child Services, Cardiac Sciences, Neurosciences, Orthopedics, Critical Care & Emergency Medicine. The team is comprised of a mix of highly skilled local and international full-time and visiting consultants, setting a benchmark that will enhance the long-term sustainability of the country’s healthcare ecosystem for both patients and practitioners.

SSKOHN
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Abiola has spent about 14 years in journalism. His career has covered some top local print media like TELL Magazine, Broad Street Journal, The Point Newspaper.The Bloomberg MEI alumni has interviewed some of the most influential figures of the IMF, G-20 Summit, Pre-G20 Central Bank Governors and Finance Ministers, Critical Communication World Conference.The multiple award winner is variously trained in business and markets journalism at Lagos Business School, and Pan-Atlantic University. You may contact him via email - [email protected]

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Coronavirus

FG explains how the Covid-19 vaccines work and their composition

The NPHCDA Director said that Covid-19 vaccine candidates are of various categories based on their mechanism of action.

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The Federal Government through the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) has explained the composition of the Covid-19 vaccines and how they work.

This is as some of them have been approved for emergency use by the World Health Organization (WHO) and some countries, while others are still at different phases of clinical trials for possible approval.

According to a report from the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), this insight was given by the Executive Director/Chief Executive of NPHCDA, Dr Faisal Shuaib, who said there were several COVID-19 vaccine candidates.

READ: African Union signs deal for 400 million Johnson and Johnson single shot vaccine

He said that Covid-19 vaccine candidates are of various categories based on their mechanism of action such as the inactivated or weakened virus vaccines.

He explained that the idea behind the formulation of an inactivated or weakened virus vaccine is to elicit an immune response without causing the disease itself. Shuaib also said there were protein-based vaccines, which used harmless fragments of proteins or protein shells that mimic the Covid-19 virus to safely generate an immune response.

He added that the viral vector vaccines used a virus that had been genetically engineered to produce coronavirus proteins to safely generate an immune response and not give rise to the disease.

Going further, Shuaib pointed out that the Ribonucleic Acid (RNA) and Deoxyribonucleic Acid (DNA) vaccines employed a cutting-edge approach that used genetically engineered RNA or DNA to generate a protein that safely prompted an immune response.

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READ: China publicly presents its COVID-19 vaccines, 2 doses to cost below $146

SSKOHN

What you should know

  • It can be recalled that on March 2, 2021, Nigeria received the first set of about 4 million doses of the AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine, manufactured by the Serum Institute in India and shipped via the COVAX Facility, a partnership between CEPI, Gavi, UNICEF and WHO.
  • A few days ago, the Executive Director of NPHCDA disclosed that a total of 8,491 Nigerians have reacted adversely to the AstraZeneca inoculation since the exercise began on March 15.
  • He said that Nigeria recorded 52 cases of moderate to severe incidents of Adverse Effects Following Immunisation (AEFI), presented as fever, vomiting, diarrhoea headaches, dizziness and allergic reactions.
  • About 1.09 million Nigerians have so far been administered the first dose of the AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine.

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Covid-19: WHO opposes proof of vaccination for international travel

According to the WHO, countries should know that requiring proof of vaccination deepens inequities and promotes unequal freedom of movement.

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The World Health Organization’s Emergency Committee has opposed the request of proof of vaccination as a condition of entry for international travel.

This is due to the limited evidence on whether vaccination against Covid-19 is able to reduce the transmission of the disease and the persistent inequity in the global distribution of the vaccine.

This disclosure is contained in a statement issued by the WHO after the seventh meeting of the International Health Regulations (2005) Emergency Committee regarding the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, which was convened by the global health body’s Director-General, Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, on Thursday, April 15, 2021.

READ: Covid-19: FG discloses why it is pausing vaccinations soon in some states

The recommendation by the WHO’s Emergency Committee is coming as various countries are considering the idea of launching vaccine passports for travellers and for other activities including sports.

The Committee said that countries should know that requiring proof of vaccination deepens inequities and promotes unequal freedom of movement.

The statement from the WHO’s Emergency Committee partly reads, “Do not require proof of vaccination as a condition of entry, given the limited (although growing) evidence about the performance of vaccines in reducing transmission and the persistent inequity in the global vaccine distribution.

“States Parties are strongly encouraged to acknowledge the potential for requirements of proof of vaccination to deepen inequities and promote differential freedom of movement.’’

READ: COVID-19: Over 700 thousand Nigerians vaccinated in March

SSKOHN

The statement also pointed out the following:

  1. Prioritize vaccination for seafarers and aircrews in line with the Joint statement on prioritization of COVID-19 vaccination for seafarers and aircrew. Special attention should be paid to seafarers who are stranded at sea and who are stopped from crossing international borders for crew change due to travel restrictions, including requirements for proof of COVID-19 vaccination, to ensure that their human rights are respected.
  2. Implement coordinated, time-limited, risk-based, and evidence-based approaches for health measures in relation to international traffic, in line with WHO guidance and IHR provisions. If States Parties implement quarantine measures for international travellers on arrival at their destination, these measures should be based on risk assessments, and consider local circumstances.
  3. Reduce the financial burden on international travellers for the measures applied to them for the protection of public health (e.g. testing, isolation/quarantine, and vaccination), in accordance with Article 40 of the IHR.
  4. Share information with WHO on the effects of health measures in minimizing transmission of SARS-CoV-2 during international travel to inform WHO’s development of evidence-based guidelines.

What you should know

  • The European Union member states have already agreed on vaccine certificates, China has launched a health certificate program for travellers, and airline companies are also considering requiring vaccination proof.
  • The US had earlier this month said that it would not require vaccination passports but added that the private sector was free to explore the idea.
  • The WHO, for now, has only approved 3 vaccines for the coronavirus—the one manufactured by Pfizer-BioNTech, the AstraZeneca-Oxford vaccine made in India and South Korea, and the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

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