As more people living with HIV access antiretroviral treatment, the disease is no longer a death sentence. Instead, many are advancing to old age and acquiring non-communicable diseases(NCDs), including diabetes and hypertension. This has formed the background for research by the Institute of Human Virology Nigeria (IHVN) to study the burden, prevalence, and incidence of non-communicable diseases among people living with HIV in five sites across the FCT, starting with General Hospital, Kubwa.
To further the strides made by the research and promote quality medical diagnosis at the facility, ISN medical, the leading supplier of medical diagnostic equipment in Nigeria and sponsor of this study, has donated premium laboratory instruments to General Hospital, Kubwa in partnership with IHVN. On Tuesday, August 4, 2020, the handover event was held at the hospital premises.
Some of the instruments donated include Cobas c111 and AVL, with the capacity to run over 40tests including electrolytes, renal function, liver function, lipid profile, blood glucose, proteins, and critical care. Also donated were the Mindray BC5150, Merck Lab Water unit, and BDConsumables. All the equipment will be stationed at the General Hospital and will become the hospital’s property once the research is completed.
According to Vitalis Echebiri, acting regional sales manager for ISN, “The motive of this donation is not financial gain but capacity development. By our sponsorship of this study, we aim to promote local funding for indigenous research and develop local content in Nigeria. We believe that Nigerians will benefit from the innovative medical solutions that this study will inform. The benefit to Nigerians will be the benefit to ISN.”
The study is a cohort research in which 200 people living with HIV will be registered, alongside another 200 people who test negative for HIV. They will be registered and tested periodically for non-communicable diseases over two years. The study will consider four groups of non-communicable diseases – cardiovascular diseases, diabetes mellitus, cancer (cervical and prostate cancer), and chronic obstructive pulmonary airway diseases. The research will provide data that can help in the more proactive and effective management of these non-communicable diseases.
Speaking at the event, Dr. Collins Kalu, project coordinator for HIV services and site investigator for the research at Kubwa General Hospital, stated, “While we are taking care of HIV infection, which for now they have almost overcome, we are also taking care of these other diseases that come with age. We are able to evaluate to know how many of them will have non-communicable diseases and if they do, we start managing it on time.”
Responding on behalf of the Kubwa General Hospital, Dr. Lasisi Muideen, medical director of the hospital said, “It was generally a decision of the FCTA health secretariat. It is a multi-centered study happening in many of our facilities. Kubwa happens to be one of them, and we are always glad to be part of a progressive research like this one.” Equally worthy of mention is that ISNMedical’s donation marks the first time a local donor is investing in local research by theInstitute.
Starting with Kubwa Hospital as the first site, the research will expand to other sites, including the University of Abuja Teaching Hospital, Nyanya General Hospital, Asokoro District Hospital, and Police Clinic.