A Partnership to bring Quality, Safe, Cure for Sickle Cell Disorder to Nigerians
Sickle Cell Foundation Nigeria (SCFN) and the Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH) are delighted to announce the signing of an MoU formalizing their partnership to establish the first Comprehensive Bone Marrow Transplant (BMT) Centre in Lagos. BMT is the known cure for sickle cell disorder and with this centre in Lagos, the cure will be locally available and accessible to Nigerians in Nigeria. This is indeed fitting as Nigeria is by far the country with the highest-burden of sickle cell disorder in the world. Over 40 million Nigerians are carriers of the sickle cell gene and an estimated 150,000 babies are born every year with sickle cell in the country. Sadly, 100,000 of these babies do not live to celebrate their 5th birthday – dying mostly from ignorance and lack of access to proper diagnosis, treatment and care.
“We are very excited to develop a state-of-the-art Bone Marrow Transplant Centre in Lagos and thereby make this life-changing service SAFE and accessible to Nigerians in Nigeria”.
This partnership between LUTH and SCFN is a Public Private Partnership (PPP) and it has put in place a state-of-the- art, world class facility that Nigerians will be proud of. The development of the centre has been with supervision by the University of Vanderbilt, Tennessee, USA, under the watchful eye of the Supervising Consultant, Dr. Adetola Kassim – the Nigerian-born, distinguished and internationally-
renowned Professor of Medicine, Haematology and Oncology as well as Head, Centre of Excellence for Sickle Cell Disease, Vanderbilt University.
Doctors, nurses and scientists have already undergone training ahead of the opening of the centre and in addition, a Post (follow up) BMT Clinic is already being run at the Sickle Cell Foundation Nigeria for persons who have had BMT done abroad; they are seen in this clinic for follow up management and care, rather than travel every month abroad.
It is expected that once the doors to the LUTH/SCFN BMT Centre are thrown open, not only will Nigerians cease to travel out to access this cure for sickle cell, but it will in fact be a new dawn for medical tourism into Nigeria from other countries for SAFE, BONE MARROW TRANSPLANTATION PROCEDURE.
Dr. Annette Akinsete, MBBS, DTM&H, MPH, FMCPH
Tel: +234 8137081300