LASSON seeks to improve laparoscopic surgery

*Performs six life surgeries in LUTH, trains junior surgeons
*Tasks govt on inclusion in health insurance scheme

The Laparoscopic Surgery Society of Nigeria (LASSON) has pledged its commitment towards improving and increasing the adoption of laparoscopic surgery across the country.

The society, whose members performed six successful laparoscopic surgeries at the Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH), as part of activities to mark its seventh international workshop said there was need to provide world-class surgery service to the Nigerian patients.

Explaining the theme of the two-day workshop, “Expanding the Footprints of Laparoscopic Surgery in Nigeria”, the President of LASSON, who is also the Chief Executive Officer, Lagoon Hospitals, Dr Jimi Coker said, though, the team of surgeons have been doing the surgery in Nigeria for seven years, there is need for more emphasis on increasing the scope of the surgery in the country.

Also known as keyhole surgery, Coker further explained that the procedure is sophisticated and easy, adding, “The advantage of it is that the patient would have the same operation he or she would have had in the old fashion way, but the recovery is a lot quicker. That is the beauty of minimal access surgery.”

Speaking on the training of the junior consultant surgeons, the president said: “At each of our conferences, we would combine lectures with life operating and then practical skill for the residence and junior consultants, who will have the opportunity to practice on life pigs as this now gives them a real life opportunity to understand the anatomy and effect of the operation they are doing.”

Commending the efforts of the society in training manpower to promote the surgery in Nigeria, the Chief Medical Director, LUTH, Dr Chris Bode said: “This is a standard way of training surgeons all over the world and it is something that we have adopted here too by combining the lectures with the life operating practical skills.”

He said the Lagos University Teaching Hospital is very proud to be part of this movement to ensure citizens don’t embark on medical tourism in search of what is readily and immediately available in Nigeria, adding, “we must give it whatever it takes to succeed.” On his part, Consultant Laparoscopic and Bariatric Surgeon, Dr. Abuchi Okaro said to achieve success in expanding the footprint of the surgery in Nigeria, the government must assist in resolving the various challenges such as inadequate infrastructure, insufficient power supply among others, as well as covering the cost of the surgery through the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) to enable citizens afford it.

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