Ogun State Government in collaboration with a private organisation, Oncopadi Arc has launched a Digital Cancer Clinic Hub, as part of measures to reduce the wide care gap between cancer treatment specialists and patients in the State and Nigeria at large.
The Commissioner for Health, Dr. Tomi Coker, while launching the Cancer Clinic Hub at the Olabisi Onabanjo University Teaching Hospital, (OOUTH) Sagamu, said cancer is one of the major killer diseases in the world, lamenting the high rate of late presentation of patients in the country.
Coker disclosed that 80 percent of cancer patients in Nigeria are not likely to survive beyond three years after diagnosis, noting the majority of them do not know about their status until it has become late.
She identified lack of regular screening programmes and inadequate oncologists in Nigeria, stating that the country hitherto has just 81 oncologists, which are not enough for cancer patients across the country.
“This innovation which is being set up in our tertiary health facility will go a long way to help connect cancer patients with qualified cancer care providers, coupled with availability of sustainable nationwide screening programmes, this Digital Cancer Clinic will bring about a downward trend of cancer burden in our State and Nigeria”, she said.
The Commissioner added that the initiative was in line with the Prince Dapo Abiodun-led administration vision for the health sector, which is based on equal access to healthcare, saying the State would strive to achieve Universal Health Coverage for all.
On her part, the Chief Executive Officer, Oncopadi Arc, Dr. Omolola Salako, noted that the Clinic would help to improve access to patient care, while creating a platform for clinical trials and research among consultant Oncologists across the State, appreciating the management of OOUTH for facilitating the set-up of the digital clinic.