80% of doc­tors seek­ing jobs abroad — Sur­vey

Daily Trust - - NEWS - By Ojoma Akor

About 80 per cent of med­i­cal doc­tors in Nige­ria are cur­rently seek­ing work op­por­tu­ni­ties abroad, a new sur­vey has re­vealed.

The study which was con­ducted by the Nige­rian Polling Or­gan­i­sa­tion, NOIPolls, in part­ner­ship with the Nige­ria Health Watch said the find­ings cuts across ju­nior, mid and se­nior doc­tors in both pri­vate med­i­cal in­sti­tu­tions such as house of­fi­cers, corps mem­bers, med­i­cal and se­nior med­i­cal of­fi­cers, res­i­dents, reg­is­trars , con­sul­tants and med­i­cal di­rec­tors.

Brief­ing news­men on the re­port of the sur­vey yes­ter­day in Abuja, Chief Ex­ec­u­tive Of­fi­cer of NOIPolls, Dr Bell Ihua said the rea­sons for the loom­ing brain drain in the health sec­tor in­clude chal­lenges such as high taxes and de­duc­tion from salary, 98 per­cent, poor salaries and emol­u­ments , 91 per­cent, and the huge knowl­edge gap that ex­ists in the med­i­cal prac­tice abroad, 47 per­cent among others.

He said the sur­vey sought to sound an alarm of a loom­ing brain drain in the coun­try’s health sec­tor and trig­ger the much needed re­forms to re­design a health sys­tem that is re­spon­sive to the health­care needs of the na­tion.

Ihua said 87 per cent of the doc­tors sur­veyed be­lieve that gov­ern­ment was not con­cerned about ad­dress­ing the chal­lenges fac­ing med­i­cal doc­tors. He said 93 per cent of them seek to go to the United King­dom, 86 per­cent to the United States of Amer­ica, 60 per­cent to Canada and 59 per­cent to Saudi Ara­bia to men­tion a few.

Com­ment­ing on the find­ings of the sur­vey, Dr Abim­bola Ola­jide, North­ern Cau­cus Leader, Na­tional As­so­ci­a­tion of Res­i­dent Doc­tors, Dr Akeem Lawal, a Chem­i­cal Pathol­o­gist at Na­tional Hos­pi­tal, Abuja, and Dr CJ Achonwa, who rep­re­sented Pres­i­dent Nige­ria Med­i­cal As­so­ci­a­tion, Prof Mike Ogir­ima called for bet­ter plan­ning for the health­care sys­tem, im­proved work­ing con­di­tions and en­abling en­vi­ron­ment for pro­fes­sion­als, over­seas train­ing, pri­vate sec­tor in­vest­ment in health and a cen­tral­ized place­ment for horse­man­ship that is free of cor­rup­tion and nepo­tism.

Dr Abim­bola Ola­jide, North­ern Cau­cus Leader, Na­tional As­so­ci­a­tion of Res­i­dent Doc­tors, said about 2, 500 doc­tors have in­di­cated in­ter­est to travel out of the coun­try be­tween now and Septem­ber.

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