BRIEF HISTORICAL BACKGROUND

The National Ear Care Centre, Kaduna is a very young parastatal of the Federal Ministry of Health which came into existence in 1999.   Its birth was in recognition by the World Health Organization (WHO) of the very high Prevalence of hearing impairment in Africa, (Nigeria inclusive) and its subsequent encouragement of countries to set up institutions that would, among other things:

  1. Spearhead the fight against deafness and hearing impairment through diagnosis and treatment, and
  2. Carry out and coordinate research into the Prevalence of deafness and hearing impairment in the country.

The Centre, for logistic problems started its operations from facilities provided by the Lagos University Teaching Hospital, Lagos in 1999. Relocation to Kaduna started in 2002 and was concluded by October, 2003. Since then, the Centre has continued to operate in facilities provided by the Kaduna State government, both for its administrative and clinical services.

The centre was established with the following mandate;

  • To lead in the diagnosis and treatment of Ear, Nose and Throat diseases in the country
  • Conduct and coordinate researches into the prevalence of deafness in Nigeri
  • To train manpower for the ENT specialty.

However, the centre has in spite of all odds, strived to, as much as possible, meet up to these challenges of fulfilling its mandate.

CLINICAL SERVICES

The Centre is the only specialist  Hospital in Nigeria for Diagnosis, Treatment and Research into the Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) specialty, though ENT services are available in some Teaching Hospitals in different parts of the Country.

SERVICES RENDERED

  • Diagnosis and treatment of Ear, Nose and Throat disease.
  • Ear, Nose and Throat Surgeries.
  • Audiology: Audiometry, Sisi Bekesi, Bera tympanometry.
  • Endoscopy
  • School hearing screening services
  • Speech Therapy
  • Video Nystagmography
  • Industrial hearing conversation services
  • Ear mould
  • Visual reinforcement audiometric
  • Otoacoustic emission test, etc.

CLINICS

Modays            –      Clinic

Tuesdays         –      Theatre

Wednesdays   –       Clinic

Thurdays        –        Theatre

Fridays           –        Seminar/Clinical/Meetings/Consultation/Ward round

NHIS consultation runs 24 hours services everyday

GOPD runs 24 hours services

ACHIEVEMENTS

Permanent site

One the major achievements of the centre was the acquisition The old psychiatric hospital of the Ahmadu Bello University Teaching Hospital as her permanent site. In the month of March 2007, the centre relocated to the permanent site with the exception of clinical services department. This is due to the fact that the structures are quite old and in great state of disrepair. when renovations of clinic, wards and outpatient blocks are completed, the clinical services will finally move to the permanent site.

Clinical Services

As a mark of acceptability of the centre’s services, patients come from all over the states of the federation, including the Federal Capital Territory for its services as well as from neighboring countries like Chad and Niger republic.

From 14th August 2001 to 31st July 2007, a total of 31,422 patients attended the clinic for consultation. This comprises of:

  • New cases 16,225 (52%)
  • Follow ups 15,187 (48%)

17,293 (55%) patients were infants while 14,149 (45%) patients were adults.  On the average, the centre has a monthly attendance of 474 patients and an average annual attendance of 5,160 patients. These figures are likely to double when the clinic finally relocate to the permanent site.

To date, a total of 238 major surgeries were performed while 8,657 minor procedures/surgery were done.

Research/Training

Similarly, in fulfillment of its mandate on training, the centre has trained 630 Post-Basic ORL Nurses between 1999 – 2018 in her School of Post Basic ORL Nursing; the only one in the country.  Of recent, there have been enquiries from neighboring countries for the sponsorship of foreign students for the course.

Also, in recognition of the high prevalence of deafness and hearing impairment in the country, the Centre introduced a 4-week primary Ear Care Course for community health officers, Community Nurses, and Students of other Health Intitutions.  This is intended to ensure early detection, treatment and referral of patients. To date, 341 rural health workers have been trained.

Workshops/Seminars

  1. National Seminar on Prevention of Deafness (September 2005) was organized by the centre. Three lectures were delivered by renowned scholars:
    • “Causes of Deafness and Hearing Loss in Developing Countries” (Late Dr. N. Mgbor, ENT Surgeon)
    • “The Importance Deaf Education in Rehabilitation” (Mr. ISUWA JURMANG Deaf Education department, UNI-JOS)
    • “Rehabilitation work as it affects the Deaf” (Mr. Paul Caswell from CBM Nigeria)

Over 300 Health practitioners attended among whom were Doctors, Pharmacists, Nurses, Community Health Officers, Community Health Ext Workers, Teachers of the deaf School, Rehabilitation workers and the General public.

  1. Train-the Trainers Workshop/Launching of W.H.O Training Manual (May 2006): It was a 2 week workshop for Doctors, Nurses, CHO, Tutors of Schools of Health Technology. The Workshop was focused at reducing the incidence of preventable deafness in the community, raising awareness and management of hearing impairment. The training was held in two centres: Kaduna & Enugu representing the Northern and Southern Nigeria respectively with a total of 64 participants. The same workshop is being organized this year which holds from 20th August 2007.
  2. Noise and the Ear (June 2006): This is a Public Lecture series and was delivered by Professor GTA Ijaduola on the effect of noise on the ear.
  3. Reconstructive Ear Surgery in Hearing Rehabilitation (Sept 2006): this is a guest lecture series 1 which was delivered by Professor F O Ogisi. Over 100 Participants attended the lecture among whom were ENT Surgeons, Paediatricians, Pharmacists Nurses Community Leaders etc.
  4. Integrating Primary Ear Care into the National Primary Health Care System in Nigeria (July 2007): This is another public lecture which is the second in the series. It was delivered by Associate Professor C C Nwawolo.
  5. Dangers of Traditional Uvulectomy Workshop: This is a two-day workshop which is held yearly. It is aimed at creating awareness on the risks involved in traditional uvulectomy and the need to discourage its practice so as to reduce the peril of this dreadful act. Over 156 participants attended the workshop between 2004 and 2007.

REFORMS

In compliance with the government policy on the above, the Centre has made remarkable progress in the implementation of the reform agenda from 2005 to date.  This has led to the following:

  1. Privatization of security services
  2. Privatization of cleaning and gardening services
  3. Establishment of SERVICOM unit
  4. Developing a website
  5. Computerization and Installation of Hospital Management System
  6. Improved Security through installation of CCTV

DEVELOPMENTAL PROJECT

The Centre always ventured in developmental projects in order to expand its operation for meeting the defined goals and objectives in the provision of ENT quality service delivery.

OPERATIONAL CONSTRAINTS

  1. PERSONNEL

While demand for services of the centre has continued to increase, ability to expand services has been constrained by lack of sufficient manpower.  Unfortunately, efforts to obtain approval for established positions from the office of the Head of Service of the federation; which is a necessary step for the recruitment of critical manpower has still not yielded results.

  1. FUNDING

Funding has been a major constraint of the centre.  Unlike   many other institutions, the centre, from inception to date, has neither benefited from take-off grant nor special funding.

From 2004 – date, capital funding has been as follows:

These funds were used mostly to purchase medical and office equipments.  Though there appears to have been progressive upward increases in capital allocation in the past three (3) years, these amounts are grossly inadequate to equip a specialist centre of this mandate.

No. Year Capital Allocation Level of Implementation
1 2004 20,000,000.00 98 percent
2 2005 30,000,000.00 100 percent
3 2006 39,700,000.00 100 percent released though 50% is yet to be assessed due to delays in release of certificate of award/payment by Due Process Office.
4. 2007 100,000,000.00 Due process on going