Retinoblastoma: Eye Centre Spends Over N50m Treating 77 Eyes, Targets 500 Patients On World Sight Day

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Chief Medical Director, National Eye Care Centre Kaduna, Dr. Mahmood Alhassan

By; DEKERA NICHOLAS, Kaduna

As the world marks the 2018 World Sight Day, usually second Thursday of October yearly, the National Eye Centre Kaduna, North West Nigeria, has revealed that over 50 million Naira has been spent on free treatment of 69 Retinoblastoma patients with 77 eyes.

Speaking at the one-day lecture at the Centre in Kaduna, the Chief Medical Director Dr. Mahmood Alhassan said the ‘’treatment of retinoblastoma is very expensive, on the average it cost seven Hundred and fifty thousand naira to treat one eye of retinoblastoma since the chemo drugs are very expensive though the figures quoted are collaborative because the patients themselves and other donors teamed up to ensure it was successful.’’

Earlier, Permanent Secretary Kaduna State Ministry of Health  Alh. Shehu Usman Muhammad who represented the Honorable Commissioner for Health Kaduna State said ‘’blindness is not an invitation for begging, it is not the end of once life but a challenge to take up certain responsibility.’’

‘’The Kaduna State Government is already doing something to step up support for campaign on  good health already a cancer center is to be established, the development of that center has gone far, for those of you that are much aware we are building a three hundred bed space Health facility so we are partnering other stakeholders to enure the effective management of the issues the guest lecturer mentioned, the Chemo therapy and others. And of course part of what makes the treatment very expensive is late diagnosis  once the disease is at an advance stage, it becomes very expensive to treat and the Kaduna State Government is doing everything possible to acquire the best machines. But it is very important for the public to also know that when they have a problem, they must also go to the right place for solutions’’ he added.

Similarly, the guest lecturer Dr. Amina Hassan Wale pointed that one the commonest symtoms of Retinoblastoma in Children is white eye, saying early diagnosis and referral to reputable hospitals for treatment helps in effective treatment. She also called for Retinoblastoma Trust fund to ensure quality treatment for patients.

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