House of Reps Committee Commends Ag. MD National Orthopedic Hospital, Prof Onche For Financial Prudence

The House of Representatives Committee on Specialty Health Care has commended the Ag. Medical Director (MD) National Orthopedic Hospital Jos, Prof. Icha Onche for utilizing the little resources given to him to achieved much.
The Committee which was in Jos, for oversight function, went on tour and inspected specialized hospitals, centres and schools in the city to assess the availability, adequacy and functionality of medical and training facilities, services, and personnel of these institutions.
It also measured the actual implementation of the 2023 Appropriations Act as approved by the National Assembly, detailed analysis of capital projects implementation and overhead releases, IGR and related expenditures within the period, Staff Nominal Roll and staff to student’s ratio.
Having gone round the facility donated by the Plateau State Government for the orthopedic Hospital which is the old JUTH site situated at Murtala Mohammed way, Chairman of the Committee, Hon. Alex Egbona while speaking to journalists said they had previous interaction with the Medical Director in Abuja on the need for the takeoff of the hospital for the benefit of the people.
“So, the inspection of the facility became necessary to have first hand assessment on progress of work and to see what needs to be done for the takeoff of the hospital for the benefit of our people.
“And to our surprise, despite the lean resources, the Ag. Medical Director has done well and as we go to Abuja, we are going to appeal to the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare to make sure more funds are released for this hospital to take off.
Also speaking to journalists, the Ag. Medical Director of National Orthopedic Hospital Jos, Prof. Icha Onche expressed optimism for the quick takeoff of the hospital.
“If you ask me when we will open our doors, I am hopeful for September, but I wish it could be earlier.
“For me, orthopedics is a passion and a lifestyle. I am fully committed and willing to sacrifice everything to ensure the hospital takes off successfully. Thereafter, I can rest knowing I have done my part”.
The MD appreciated the Executive Governor of Plateau State, Barr. Caleb Mutfwang and the former speaker, House of Representatives for their interventions leading to progress of work at the hospital.
According to him, “fortunately, when the Honorable Deputy Speaker was in office, he generously provided us with an intervention fund of 400 million naira, which was domiciled in the JUTH account since we are none-existent and this fund went a long way in supporting the renovation excercise.
“The governor of Plateau State has also been very supportive, overseeing internal network projects with significant funding. We are very grateful for his support and encouragement”.
Prof. Onche however, noted with disappointment that the inflation between December 2023 and March 2024, made the contract sum insufficient. “When the contract was awarded in September last year, it was for 437 million naira, (already creating a deficit of 37 million naira).
“And with the current inflation rate, the contractor has abandoned the site in the last six weeks.
“I had to report this to my ministry, and the Permanent Secretary visited us to see the situation firsthand. The Rt. Honorable Deputy Speaker also visited to see how his intervention fund was being utilized”.

“We are very grateful for these visits and the attention given to our hospital.

He said the House Committee on Specialty Healthcare, led by its Chairman Chief Alex Egbona, has also been very supportive stressing that the Committee thoroughly inspected every aspect of the hospital.
“We have completed a Bill of Quantities (BOQ) outlining the extent of work done, the work left, and the costs needed to complete the renovation.
“The Ministry of Health and Social Services has this information. We also plan to approach the governor of Plateau State once more for further intervention to complete our work”.
The MD further appreciated the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare for being supportive in trying to provide interventions.
“We are supposed to appropriate one billion naira for equipment, which is domiciled with the Ministry, not with us. We have complied with all their requirements and are awaiting their assistance. The 2024 budget year has not yet started, which has delayed our progress”, Prof. Icha Onche said.

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House of Reps Committee Commends Ag. MD National Orthopedic Hospital, Prof Onche For Financial Prudence

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