Calitown.com has been informed that the 150-bed Federal Neuro-Psychiatric Hospital, Calabar, presently has a 100% occupancy rate. This disclosure was made by the Medical Director of the hospital, Dr. Joseph Okegbe after taking calitown.com on a facility tour of the hospital recently.
According to Okegbe, the full occupancy rate is responsible for his attempts to upgrade facilities in the hospital as well as develop new ones to meet on the ground challenges. The multi-purpose structure in the hospital, under construction, will, he also disclosed, address the dearth in office accommodation, earn the hospital much needed revenue and help modernize the place, unarguably the oldest Psychiatric Hospital in Nigeria, established in 1903.
On the challenge of psychiatric care in the state, perhaps he said, ”we need to take psychiatry to the communities because it is in most communities that you will be able to get those who have early stages of ill-health, so we can prevent it or arrest the progress in the individual”. Stigmatization he warned, must be frowned at as more often than not, it is the thin line between good and mental health, adding that where some people should have gotten help early enough, they have been stigmatized into staying away and being the worse for it in the end.
He further informed calitown.com that the hospital has been given accreditation by the National Post-Graduate Medical College of Nigeria and the West African College of Physicians to undertake undergraduate studies. This development means that the hospital can now employ resident doctors who will be groomed for the Fellowship examinations after which they can become consultants.
While commending the Cross River State government for donating a 22 hectre piece of land to the institution, he again appealed that government should help jump start the development process that will see the institution move to its permanent site, away from its present location considered not conducive for the welfare of patients. The hospital boss was particular that, if this is done, they will be better positioned to take in a teeming number of patients who have had to resort to out-patient treatment even when it is clear that the patients “require hospitalization if they have to make adequate progress”.
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