Reduce Taxation on Medical Equipment, Expert Tells Govt

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Reduce taxation on medical equipment, expert tells govt
An image of a medical equipment

A Consultant Neurosurgeon, Brain, and Spine Surgery Consortium, Dr. Biodun Ogungbo, has called on the government to reduce taxation on medical equipment to improve spine surgeries and treatment.

 Ogungbo said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja to commemorate World Spine Day.

 According to him, the importation of medical equipment and consumables was being taxed at the airports and seaports by customs, NAFDAC and NDLEA.

Ogungbo urged, “government should look into this and protect the people by removing such bottlenecks.

“The economic situation in Nigeria at the moment is not favorable to patients with spine issues.

“Equipment and consumables have to be imported at huge costs which have increased the cost of spine surgery and treatment.

“It is therefore critical that people look after their spines and prevent neck and back pains, spine injuries and infection.”

Ogungbo said that hospitals, especially private health facilities were currently being affected by multiple taxations from government agencies.

He said minimally invasive spine surgery and endoscopic spine surgery were improving in the country.

Ogungbo said, “there are many issues with open operations and many complications that can be avoided using smaller incisions and smaller wounds.

“Endoscopic surgery especially, in patients who can benefit from it leads to faster recovery, no blood loss, and early return to work.

“The health improvements and specialists now available in Nigeria make it imperative that people get treated here.

“There has been an increase in the capability and capacity to manage spine issues, to perform safe and effective operations,” he said.

Ogungbo said that the costs were significantly cheaper than going abroad, saying, it’s still a huge amount for the average man.”

He, however, said focusing on spine care and prevention of problems remained the best way for many.

NAN reports that World Spine Day is a healthcare event observed every year on Oct. 16 intending to promote the importance of spine health and educate people to understand the seriousness of spine health.

(NAN) 

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