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Monday, September 13, 2021


Mr. Udom Inoyo 

(Dr. Jonah C. Asiegbu)

First thing first; my name is Jonah Asiegbu, a medical doctor who was working at Ibom Specialist Hospital at the time the PCR machine silently arrived the hospital last year, in the heat of COVID 19 pandemic.

I just read the recent interview by the immediate past Commissioner for Health in Akwa Ibom State, Dr. Dominic Ukpong, about the PCR machine that was donated to Ibom Specialist Hospital(ISH) by the Inoyo Toro Foundation and Stanbic IBTC Bank at the peak of COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. This equipment couldn't have come at a more auspicious time, given the gap in analyzing and understanding the variant strain of the virus and in undertaking proper medical diagnosis by the medical team, which invariably would have left us in an epileptic fatal cauldron.

Dr. Jonah .C. 

Mr Udom Inoyo deserves our commendation especially as this life-saving machine which detects COVID-19 variant at its latent phase has helped to save lives of numerous patients in the hospital, homes, multinational organisations, etc, including several high profile indigenes of Akwa Ibom State and environs. Up till date, there's a high inflow of both private and public officials into Ibom Specialist Hospital to get examined using the machine. It's also note worthy to mention here that the PCR machine located at ISH facility is the finest of it's kind, with 99.9% test precision. The machine is presently used in collaboration with other accredited centers as a gold standard for revalidation of COVID 19 reports. It has also been recommended and approved by Nigeria Center for Disease Control (NCDC) for COVID 19 related travel verifications.

Importantly, my comment here isn't just about the PCR machine but about the CHARACTER of the gentleman called Udom Inoyo. Even as a staff of ISH, most of my colleagues and laboratory operators of the machine are not even aware who the donor of the PCR machine is since there was no fanfare, nor the usual ribbon cutting which is a norm in our clime. As sophisticated, exorbitant and significant as this was and still is, he chose to do it quietly. Mr. Inoyo seems not to believe that every act of philanthropy is a thing for the cameras. 

Interestingly, my first encounter with the donor was in July 2020. He had come to ISH for his annual wellness examination, which I later understood he does without fail as July is the month of his birth. Since he was in Uyo for government functions and will always be in Uyo, he decided to bring his medical records home.

Mr Inoyo presented himself to the hospital alone without the usual personnels racing randomly. He registered, paid all required fees, queued for triage and was assigned to a doctor (myself) whom he waited for at the Out-Patient Department, as all other patients. Unfortunately, while waiting for his time for a clinical encounter, I was called to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) which invariably extended his waiting time. Mr Inoyo waited patiently without the usual executive outburst. While commencing my clinical rountine with Mr Inoyo, I apologized for the delay and he responded profoundly, "Doctor, I understand, I am a professional as well. Critical patients must be attended to first at all cost". These  words struck me deeply. He hadn't taken a breakfast since morning, acknowledging that a blood analysis might be needed prior to a meal.

Truth be told, my clinical encounter with Mr Inoyo remains unforgettable: his precision, work-life balance and inexhaustible bank of knowledge. You need to be prepared to engage the aforementioned gentleman.

To all indigenes and residents of Akwa Ibom State as well as visitors who have undergone COVID-19 screening or yet to do so at Ibom Specialist Hospital, the least we can do is to say a WORD OF PRAYER or even a quiet THANK YOU to Mr Inoyo for the enormous sacrifice. 

His Excellency, Mr Udom Emmanuel must be commended for his efforts in improving the health sector and for finding a way to attract Akwa Ibom's finest to support in various ways.

May I also recommend that other big men and women here in Akwa Ibom State should learn from the gentleman, Udom Inoyo.

God bless Mr. Udom Inoyo!

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