May 29, 2014, 10:03 AM
Speaking at the presentation ceremony held at State House grounds, the Vice President, Isatou Njie-Saidy, said the Gambian First Lady has touched the life of every Gambian and even beyond. The First Lady deals with what concerns and interests the people, which is health, she added.
Health is an important pillar, she continued, adding that the First Lady wants first-class health conditions in the country, “and that is where we are heading.”
VP Njie-Saidy said the First Lady had been assisting the tertiary institutions, “as she is passionate about the health of Gambian people, especially women and children, which is why she wants to ensure that the neonatal unit is up to standard.”
The Vice President emphasized that the equipment should be maintained and put into good use.
Elio Quesada Gouzalez, head of pediatric department at the EFSTH, thanked the First Lady for the “noble gesture”.
He said that since 2012, he had been working in the pediatric unit and the First Lady has been very concerned about the neonatal unit.
With the help of the First Lady, he added, they “now have very good equipment” like incubators and other equipment to support the lives of children who are very sick.
“We are having about 1500 babies in this unit, which is a large amount. We have a big responsibility, but will fulfill it.”
Dr Bassan Kattan, chairman of Medical Advisory Committee of the EFSTH and also head of the intensive care unit, thanked the First Lady, stating that the equipment would be of great help, as they would serve well in saving the lives of children admitted at the neonatal unit.
He said they would take good care of the equipment.
Dr Omar Sey, Minsiter of Health and Social Welfare, said giving support to the neonatal unit means helping the government and his ministry.
Currently, he added, there are Gambian students who are sponsored by the government to study in different areas of health service delivery, and thanked the First Lady and the Vice President for their passion and support.
The Minister of Basic and Secondary Education, Fatou Lamin Faye, a board member of Operation Save the Children Foundation, also spoke at the ceremony.
The foundation’s executive director Fatou Mas Jobe-Njie chaired the ceremony.
The donated equipment included patient monitors, electrosurgical unit table top diatom, 300 infant incubators, infant warmers, pulse oximeters (hand held), glucometer/blood glucose meter, blood glucose test strips pk.50, electronic infusion pump, phototherapy unit, and various sizes of facemasks for infants.