Dapo Abiodun of Ogun represented by the SSG Tokunbo Talabi, the Chief of UNICEF, Lagos Office Celine Lafoucriere,and the Akarigbo of Remo land Oba Babatunde Ajayi during the inauguration of the oxygen plant in Sagamu
By Yetunde Fatungase
The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has donated a Pressure Swing Absorption (PSA) oxygen plant to the Olabisi Onabanjo University Teaching Hospital (OOUTH) in Sagamu.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the plant was built by UNICEF with the support of IHS Towers and other partners.
It is to help with the production and supply of oxygen in the treatment of pneumonia and other ailments.
Speaking while handing over the plant, the Chief of UNICEF, Lagos Office, Ms Celine Lafoucriere, said the development remains a milestone for the people of Ogun.
”This is in particular for newborns and pregnant women suffering from pneumonia and other hypoxemia disorders.
“Their fundamental right to life is about to take a positive turn with the handover of this oxygen plant close to need,” she said.
The UNICEF official added that oxygen is not only critical to improving health outcomes but also reducing mortality rates occasioned by pneumonia by 35 per cent.
“Oxygen is life and a life-saving medical gas used for treating respiratory illnesses and supporting various healthcare provisions such as emergency obstetric care, surgery, and anesthesia.
“It is critical to improving health outcomes and reducing mortality due to pneumonia by 35 percent, yet seldom available and often expensive.
“With limited access to supplemental oxygen, the line between life and death is blurred for critically-ill patients with pneumonia and severe COVID-19 symptoms,” she said.
Lafoucriere congratulated the state government for being a beneficiary of the oxygen gas plant.
Dapo Abiodun, who commissioned the plant, described it as a life-saving project and recalled the unfortunate incidents of preventable deaths during the COVID-19 outbreak where patients could not access oxygen.
Abiodun, who was represented by the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Mr Tokunbo Talabi, thanked the donors and promised that the plant would be put to use judiciously.
The state’s Commissioner for Health, Dr Tomi Coker, in her remarks, said the plant can produce 300 litres per minute, and assured that it would never run out of gas.
Coker said the state government was already planning to establish one oxygen plant each in Ota and Ijebu-Ode, and three in Abeokuta.
She added that the Federal Government would monitor all the oxygen plants, including that of Ogun.
Earlier in her opening remarks, the Chief Medical Director of the institution, Mrs Oluwabunmi Fatungase, had thanked Gov.
Abiodun for the realisation of the oxygen gas plant project.
She noted that it aligned with the visionary goals of the governor to transform healthcare delivery in the state.
Fatungase added that the establishment of the plant was a strategic move in recognising the indispensable role of oxygen in medical settings for resuscitation and inhalation therapy.
“Given our hospital’s reputation for conducting both minor and major surgeries, the integration of a self-reliant oxygen plant within our facilities becomes not just a necessity but a crucial asset,” she said.
Edited by Olawale Alabi
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