The Federal Government, on Monday, rejected plans by the Senate to upgrade some medical facilities to tertiary health institutions in Adamawa State.
The Senate is proposing three bills to give legal backing to the upgrade of the health institutions.
- Go after corrupt politicians, suspect arrested at Lagos airport tells NDLEA
- Nigerians are stronger together, Buhari warns secessionists
The bills include, the National Dermatology Hospital, Garkida Adamawa, Establishment Bill 2021; Teaching Hospital for the Modibbo Adama University, Yola and Federal Medical Centres Establishment Bill.
They were sponsored by the Senator representing Adamawa Central, Aisha Dahiru Ahmed Binani.
The Minister of State for Health, Dr Olorunnimbe Mamora, in his presentation at the opening of a two-day event on the bills, said the sponsors should have sought and obtained presidential approval before coming up with the proposed legislation.
He said there are already 22 teaching hospitals and that others were still coming on stream.
He said the 1995 Act establishing Teaching Hospitals, in Section 1 (3), empowers only the President to give approval for its establishment.
He said, “It is also pertinent to note that the name federal tertiary hospitals cannot be created without the approval of the president of the Federal Government of Nigeria.
“If the proponents of the bill have the approval of the President, it behoves on them to present the same to the Federal Ministry of Health for further necessary actions.
‘Sponsors circumvent process’
“Where there is no presidential approval for the establishment of the hospital, the sponsor of the bill will do well to first seek approval with justification.
“After securing approval, other due diligent has to be made through the Federal Government and relevant authorities, the teaching hospitals included in the list of federal teaching hospitals.
“What we are saying is that proposing a bill to amend the teaching hospitals Act to include the name of a non-existent hospital is like ‘putting the cart before the horse.’
“Existing Federal Medical Centres automatically become teaching hospitals following presidential approval in states that have federal universities without medical schools.
“I think this is the most important thing that we need to know.”
The Minister also kicked against the establishment of a national hospital for dermatology.
He said, “We observed that most of the federal teaching hospitals and some federal medical centres have that department, called the department of dermatology, it is a specialised department where issues that have to do with the skin can be better managed.
“We believe that as much as it is important to pay attention to the issue of dermatology, we also know that establishing a hospital for dermatology condition will affect patients’ opportunities to be co-managed by other specialities.”
The Chairman of the Senate panel, Ibrahim Oloriegbe, however, told the Minister that the National Assembly has powers to make laws for the establishment of federal health institutions.