THE medical director of Federal Neuro-Psychiatric Hospital, Kware (NPHK), Sokoto State, Shehu Sale, has revealed that one-third of patients the facility is treating are from Niger Republic and Chad.
Sale, a professor, disclosed this to The ICIR at the hospital on Friday, October 21.
He attributed the foreign patronage to the hospital’s proximity to the Niger Republic.
He said, “If you go to the wards and sample our patients, at least, one out of three is not from Sokoto. One-third of the patients are not from Nigeria. They are from the Niger Republic and Chad.
“We have an influx of patients from those countries for psychiatric care. But now (that we are expanding our scope of services), you’ll see them coming with other conditions to access care here because of its proximity to the border.”
The ICIR reports that the hospital is the only government facility specializing in mental disorders care in the state.
The NPHK is located close to the Nigeria-Niger border, around the Usmanu Danfodiyo University, Sokoto.
There are only two local governments between Kware Local Government Area (LGA) and the Niger Republic. They are Gwadabawa and Illela. Illela LGA shares a border with the Niger Republic.
Kware LGA is between Sokoto township and Illela LGA.
But the facility is very far from Chad.
There are eight federal neuropsychiatric hospitals in Nigeria, out of which three are in the North.
Those in the North are Federal Neuro-Psychiatric Hospital, Kaduna, Maiduguri, and Kware.
Chad is close to Maiduguri in Borno State but very far from Sokoto.
This newspaper reported on Saturday how Sale-led group of experts revealed that psychiatrists in Nigeria had reduced from approximately 300 in 2021 to about 200 in October this year.
He explained that there was a ratio of one psychiatric doctor for 500,000 Nigerians.
With the influx of people from Niger Republic and Chad, there could be more patient ratio for doctors to treat.
The Neuro-Psychiatric Hospital, Sokoto, manages about 13,000 people with mental problems yearly, Adebisi stated.