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How MRIs and Remote Surgery Could Transform African Healthcare

Remote surgery may seem like modern wizardry, something only discussed in textbooks and technologically advanced forums. Remote surgery is here and it has the ability to transform healthcare into something low-cost and easily accessible to remote regions of the world, something which has the ability to reduce trauma to the patient. Africa is one of the regions that would benefit immensely from MRIs and in particular, remote surgery, which requires only one surgeon, an anaesthesiologist and one to two nurses, thereby performing a procedure typically performed by a much larger group and being easily integrated into a turnkey hospital.
Robotic Surgery
Robotic surgery allows a surgeon to use one of two possible methods to control medical instruments during a procedure. The doctor may use a telemanipulator or a computer control to move the instruments to complete the procedure. The telemanipulator allows the doctor to perform normal surgical movements utilising robotic arms made up of end effectors and manipulators to perform the task. Computer controlled systems use robotic arms to perform the procedure. The difference between the two procedures laid out above is that the computer controlled procedure does not need the surgeon to be present at the surgery site. This is especially significant for turnkey hospitals, which may not have access to the funds required for the employment of necessary staff. Robotic surgeries are also important because they decrease surgeon fatigue during long surgeries. This type of surgery is incredibly cost efficient and the patient undergoes considerably less trauma than experienced during traditional surgeries.
Turnkey Hospitals and the Future of Nigerian Healthcare
Dr. Tunji Olowolafe is considered to be a pioneer in Nigeria’s healthcare system. He has been helping to build and maintain both turnkey hospitals and research facilities in the country for a number of years and made significant strides in improving the overall standards of Nigeria’s healthcare system. He has been working in medicine since 1984 and his passion for this field led him to form Deux Projects Limited, an organisation which focus on the restructuring and fitting of world-class hospitals throughout Nigeria. Clients they have worked with include the federal government of Nigeria, state governments, and teaching hospitals. He is currently the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Deux Projects International.
His vision of affordable healthcare and state of the art facilities, regardless of location, have revolutionised the Nigerian healthcare system. Robotic surgery and MRIs fit into this vision by allowing difficult surgeries to be performed in all areas of the country, whether or not there is a surgeon available, and turnkey hospitals are able to provide these services.
Robotic surgery can be performed virtually anywhere, saving time and resources that could be better utilised in other areas. Robotic surgery and MRIs represent the future of Nigerian and African healthcare, and are here to stay.
Written by: Abiola Alabi is a Nigerian blogger, journalist and writer. He is particularly interested in infrastructure development and urban renewal in and around the burgeoning metropolis of Lagos, Abiola closely follows the work of Dr. Tunji Olowolafe (also known as Olatunji Olowolafe) CEO of Deux Project Ltd focusing on the long term gains in economic development that comes with improved healthcare standards and the infrastructure developments needed.

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