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World Press Day Commemoration in UPTH

 World Press Day Commemoration in UPTH

Staff of the Media/ Publicity unit in the University of Port Harcourt Teaching hospital on the 3rd of May, joined their colleagues in the globe to observe World Press Day. Commemorating the day began with a rally, raising awareness on the 2024 year theme “Journalism in the Face of the Environmental Crisis.”

The Media and Publicity team took charge of sensitizing the hospital community about the vital role of media in societal awareness and advocacy with a walk round the hospital.

The world press freedom day celebration culminated with a special event on the 13th of May, where key stakeholders including the Chief Medical Director, Prof. Henry A. Ugboma, the Chairman Medical Advisory Committee, Prof. Datonye Alasia, members of the Hospital Management Committee (HMC) with other Heads of Department, were in attendance. The program was rich with activities featuring a captivating drama and dance performance by the entertainment sub-unit, followed by an award ceremony recognizing outstanding contributions.

During the award ceremony, various accolades were presented, including awards for Best Administrative Staff, Most Punctual, Most Eloquent, and others, acknowledging the exceptional contribution of individuals within the Media/Publicity unit. Notably, the Chief Medical Director, Prof. Henry A. Ugboma was also recognized for his exemplary leadership and dedication.

The highlight of the event was the delivery of the key note Lecture ” The significance of Public Relation officers in health institution ” by a guest speaker, and seasoned Public Relation practitioner, Pastor Paulinus Nsirim. He emphasised the operation of the department to leave a lasting impression of authenticity and integrity amongst her stakeholders which includes patients, staff, host communities, partner agencies etc. The roles of PR officers, challenges and recommendations for practice to ensure institutional development. Recommendations was also made for the recognition of the unit as a department and to encourage regular professional training courses aimed at enhancing the skills of the staff members. This initiative signifies a collaborative effort to empower the media professionals within the media and publicity unit to effectively communicate and advocate for critical issues.

Earlier the Head of the Media/Publicity unit Madam Elabha Meni while given her address, captioned “The journey so far” recalled how the unit had grown with the delineation of sub-units like Editoral, Protocol & Logistics, External Media Relations, Patients complaint desk etc to effectively carryout the operations of the unit. She attributed successes recorded in the past years to team work, commending unit staff for working in harmony with her.

The Chairman Medical advisory committee, Professor Datonye Alasia, and members of the hospital management committee in facilitation with the unit, encouraged staffers to pursue professional engagement in projecting the course of the hospital in training, research and health service delivery.

Professor Henry A.A. Ugboma (CMD), who graced the occasion in person collaborated suggestions of the guest speaker and the CMAC as he gave his consent for the upgrade of the Media/ Publicity unit to a full department. Having officers to effectively manage the corporate affairs and Public Relation operations for the hospital. This potential upgrade signifies the hospital’s recognition of the importance of media engagement in healthcare communication and advocacy.

The event organizing committee was chaired by Mrs Joy Ekeleme and witnessed an appreciable attendance of heads of departments, staff from other departments who joined members of the Media /Publicity unit to commemorate the first ever world press freedom day in the hospital.

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The University of Port Harcourt Teaching Hospital treats well over 400,000 out-patients per annum, over 10,000 in-patients per annum and well over 3000 surgeries per annum.

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