The Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas Limited on Tuesday inaugurated a 15-bed Intensive Care Unit for the University of Benin Teaching Hospital.
The ICU, constructed for $500,000, is part of the first phase of hospital support programme by the NLNG in Edo State.
The Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of the NLNG, Dr. Phillip Mshelbila, said the project was part of the company’s approved national corporate social responsibility hospital support programme.
Mshelbila was represented by Andy Odeh, the General Manager, External Relations and Sustainable Development, NLNG.
Mshelbila said the programme was conceived following the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic.
He said the gesture was to stem the likely pressure that medical institutions could experience in managing patients if there was another outbreak of the pandemic.
He said: “The programme consist of health intervention projects across 12 federal university teaching hospitals in the six geopolitical zones of Nigeria and Abuja.
“The 12 benefitting hospitals were selected based on the need to ensure spread across the geo-political zones, special status for South South zone as NLNG host area.
“Consideration was also given to hospitals in states with higher population.”
Mshelbila said that the approved cost was $500,000 per location, adding that $6 million was budgeted for the entire programme.
He said: “The hospital support programme was further split into two phases for ease of implementation, spanning delivery period tone between 2022 and 2024.
“The project was carried out following thorough needs assessment to optimally deploy resources.”
According to him, for UBTH, the target is to achieve the remodeling and conversion of an existing building into a 15-bed ICU.
Earlier, the Chief Medical Director of UBTH, Dr. Darlington Obaseki, said the initiative followed a Memorandum of Understanding signed with the NLNG in January.
Obaseki said that the project would complement the existing seven-bed ICU to cater for the hospital’s growing number of patients.
He said: “We are one of the busiest hospitals in this country.
“Every week, we see close to 6,000 patients, we admit about 450 patients and we see about 430 emergencies in this hospital every week.
“So, this connotes that we are highly subscribed and oversubscribed as a hospital, which is an indication of the quality of services we offer.
“Unfortunately, over the years, we have only a seven-bedded ICU, which is almost always oversubscribed.
“So, when the opportunity came for us to benefit from this Nigeria LNG hospital support programme and they asked us to identify a problem, we remembered that we needed to expand our ICU
“We are here today and we appreciate NLNG for the kind gesture.”
According to Obaseki, the facility has state of-the-art equipment such as central monitoring system, oxygen alarming system, ventilators and infusion pumps among others.