Eket - A subsidiary of Chevron Company, Star Deepwater Petroleum Limited, has built and handed over a chest clinic complex to Akwa Ibom Government.
The 10-bed capacity clinic located at Immanuel General Hospital, Eket, is equipped with X-ray machine, male and female wards, treatment room, laboratories and GeneXpert machines for diagnosis of tuberculosis.
Speaking on behalf of Chevron and partners at the handing over ceremony on Thursday at Eket, Sam Otuonye, said the clinic was part of Chevron’s health programmes for Nigeria.
Otuonye, who is the Policy, Government and Public Affairs Manager of Star Deepwater Petroleum Limited, said that so far Chevron and its partners had constructed 25 chest clinics across the country.
He said that the company had implemented awareness programmes on HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases in several communities across the six geo-political zones in the country.
Otuonye lauded the Akwa Ibom government for providing the land, permits, manpower, electricity and security for the takeoff of the project.
He said that Chevron and its partners in Agbami field located 113 km offshore Nigeria were committed to interventions in three areas of education, health and economic empowerment of Nigerians.
In his remark, the Group General Manager, National Petroleum Investment Management Services (NAPIMS), Dafe Sejebor, commended Chevron and its partners in Agbami field for building the chest clinic.
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Sejebor represented by the Supervisor, Community Development in NAPIMS, Helen Nkwo, said that NAPIMS had the responsibility of managing the investments of the Federal Government in the upstream sector.
"This project is a fruit of partnership and it is a very good way of working because government cannot solve all the nation’s problems alone," Sejebor said.
Inaugurating the clinic on behalf of the Akwa Ibom governor, Udom Emmanuel, the state Commissioner for Health, Dr Dominic Ukpong, thanked Chevron and its partners for the kind gesture.
Ukpong noted that tuberculosis was a known chronic and debilitating disease responsible for high level of morbidity and mortality globally.
The commissioner said that with the facility provided by Chevron and its partners, drug resistant tuberculosis would easily be diagnosed and managed in the state.
He promised that the state government would provide necessary assistance and services to ensure that all chest infections in the state were properly managed through the clinic.
Ukpong called on the community to make good use of the facility and also protect it from abuse and vandalism.
In his welcome address, the Medical Superintendent of Immanuel General Hospital, Eket, Dr Michael Ukpe, thanked Chevron and its partners for locating the chest clinic in the hospital.
However, Ukpe appealed to the state government to convert casual staffers of the hospital to permanent employees because some of them had served for 20 years now.
He also appealed for provision of utility vehicles to the hospital to convey drugs, consumables from the ministry headquarters and even weak patients to the hospital.
Ukpe called on other corporate organisations and donor agencies to come to the aid of the hospital to ensure quality healthcare delivery in the area.