Making this known to BusinessDay, the Chief Medical Director, LUTH, Akin Oshibogun revealed that free cleft lip palate surgery, cancer screening, cataract treatment and many more would be done for 50 people starting in August 2012.
Oshibogun also added that for some specialized expensive procedures, a 50 percent reduction in cost of treatment would be given to the patients.
"We are trying to play around the number 50 so all our services would revolve around that number so that we have 50 people benefiting from each of the free services we are rendering. This is our way of giving back to the society in commemoration of 50 years of providing quality health services to the public.
"We will screen patients that come in and even though it would be on a first come first serve basis, we would also like to give the services to those who ordinarily cannot afford them," Osibogun disclosed.
The CMD who hinted that there was a visible difference in terms of services, facilities and available funds since the hospital was established in April 1962, said that the hospital was willing to do more.
He however added that while at inception LUTH had only 300 beds, it could now boast of 800 beds, carried out its first renal transplantation and delivered its first set of quintuplets said that the hospital was doing its best to discourage medical tourism.
At the moment, the hospital had contributed over 3000 nurses to the manpower pull of the country with several schools of different aspects of nursing to provide more. There are also more medical schools now as the doctor patient ratio was currently one to 3500 patients as opposed to the one to 10000 patients previously.
Oshibogun disclosed that in terms of research, the hospital researchers were part of the team which underwent the study that produced the first In Vitro Fertilization(IVF) baby, importance of salt iodization and determined chloroquine resistance in Nigeria.
He stated that these researches had been used to formulate health policies which have benefited the public immensely.
Oshibogun however added that the hospital was willing to do more by introducing more health services such as capsule endoscopy, total hip and knee replacement, small incision cataract surgery, laparascopic surgery and open heart surgery and procedures which Nigerians travelled abroad to get.
This, no doubt, would help reduce the level of medical tourism in the country and increase the number of patients seeking treatment locally.
"Even though we have recorded some milestones in the last 50 years, we want to offer more services to the public. We are reviving discontinued procedures, introducing modern procedures and technology and over the next six months, we hope to go into open heart surgery too. We are already putting facilities in place for all these and we have the support of the federal government. However we also need the support of public spirited Nigerians and socially responsible organisations to partner with us to make this possible.
"Health services in a country should not be provided by government alone and therefore we need to engage the community, individuals and organisations to do their own part. We are therefore calling on these groups to lend their support and make this dream a reality so as to help meet all the health needs of our people," Osibogun concluded.
It will be recalled that Lagos University Teaching Hospital and the Medical School Complex grew out of a Cabinet decision of April, 1961 when the council of ministers set up a cabinet committee to consider the recommendations of Eric Ashby's Commission on Post-Secondary Education in Nigeria.
Members of the Cabinet Committee were Aja Nwachuckwu (Minister of Education), T. O.Elias (Attorney-General and Minister of Justice), Olu Akinfosile (Minister of Communications), Shehu Shagari (Minister of Establishments) and M.A. Majekodunmi (Minister of State). The Secretary to the Committee was C. O. Lawson, Deputy Secretary to the Council of Ministers.
Two of the many recommendations of the Committee approved by the Council of Ministers were the effective and rapid re-organisation of hospitals in Lagos, Surulere, Ibadan, Kaduna and Enugu for teaching clinical medicine as well as the establishment of a full-fledged Medical School in Lagos.
The site on which the Mainland Hospital was built and now occupied by LUTH and College of Medicine, University of Lagos, (CMUL) was a ninety-two (92) acre field of bush and farmland. In the perennial circumstances of scarcity of funds, it was considered economical to adapt the finished buildings of the new Surulere Mainland Hospital to suit the needs of a Teaching Hospital/Medical School Complex.