Indian expert surgeons are currently in the country to strengthen bilateral cooperation between The Gambia and India as well as to help the country in its healthcare delivery.
The visiting team, made up of two surgeons and an administrator, will also help the country by training doctors on rare specialised critical health conditions.
These surgeons are from BLK Hospital in India, a specialised tertiary hospital and one of the largest and biggest hospitals in India. The BLK Hospital is a highly specialised cardiac centre with state-of-the-art equipment with a comprehensive healthcare to the patients.
Speaking to reporters at the Serrekunda General Hospital in Kanifing, Health Minister Dr. Omar Sey reaffirmed The Gambia governments commitment to provide healthcare for the citizens by disclosing that in the First Republic, records have shown that only two people were sent on overseas treatment but in the Second Republic alone, over 600 patients were sponsored by the government to seek overseas treatment.
“This overseas treatment cost a lot; an average of one million Dalasi is spent by the President and the government per every patient that is sent out of this country. We have been sending patients to BLK and they return home very positive and success rate becomes very high,” he asserted.
Ran Mohan, the Honorary Consul of India to The Gambia, described the move as a landmark achievement for the country by having a private sector teaming up with the government in providing quality healthcare delivery to its citizens. He thanked The Gambia government and BLK Hospital for moving forward so positively during this visit.
Saidou Beyai, CEO of the Serrekunda General Hospital disclosed that BLK has conducted more than 20,000 international procedures of heart surgeries such as complex angioplasty Rotablation and Device Implantation to Endovascular and Congenital Heart Procedures. He added that their patients come from all over the globe and are mostly African countries.
“The reason why The Gambia and other African countries are sending their patients to the BLK Hospital is because of their highly specialised team of experts, professionalism, reasonable cost and their high operation success rate,” he affirmed.
He noted that this relationship with the BLK would go a long way in addressing the healthcare needs of the country, adding that his Hospital would want to be the first to do heart surgery in the country.
Representing the surgeons, Dr. Amit Chavdhary, a cardiac surgeon said The Gambia is an amazing country with lots of nice people. “The children need our help and we need to do something for them; that is our main concern,” he said of the children suffering several heart conditions.
He finally called on people to be committed and collaborate with the government to improve the health sector of the country.
by Arfang MS Camara