The Nigeria Medical Association (NMA) has urged the Federal Government to declare a state of emergency in the health sector of the country.
Dr. Omosehin Adeyemi-Osowe, Ondo Chairman of NMA, made the appeal in Akure while addressing newsmen as part of activities marking the 2022 Physicians’ Week.
The theme of this year’s lecture is Nigeria Healthcare Delivery System, and the 2023 Transition: A time to Change The Narrative.
Adeyemi-Osowe disclosed that Nigeria had the highest number of doctors working in the United Kingdom behind India and Pakistan.
The chairman noted that the country was losing her human resources to health in geometric progression.
In spite of this, he said, Lassa Viral Hemorrhagic fever, Malaria, COVID, Ebola, Marburg were still very much available in the face of worsening incidences of systemic Hypertension with or without complications.
“We call on our governments to quickly declare ’emergency action’ in Nigeria’s health sector for the sake of her citizens,” he said.
The chairman, who also expressed sadness at the devastating effects of the flood ravaging the nation, however, appealed to government at all levels to assist victims and also actively initiate measures to avert flooding.
“We also call on Federal Government to actively initiate measures to avert another flooding.
“This is one flood too many in our recent history as a nation; we say no more floods while we watch.
“Our beloved country is passing through difficult times but I know that if we persevere and continue being the best that we can be, there is light at the end of the tunnel.
“Nigeria is at a turning point and we all are hereby charged to stand as compatriots to obey the call of Nigeria.
“We must never let the labours of our heroes past be in vain. All citizens must respond to the call of Nigeria for good leadership and should never, for pecuniary benefits, sell or support candidates that cannot move our nation forward.
“Furthermore, let me inform you all that the Nigerian doctor is poorly paid, over- worked, lack necessary work tools and has become a target for kidnap.
”We as Nigerian doctors have been taken from the lofty heights of nobility to nothingness by the neglect and possible disdain for the health sector by successive governments,’” he said.
Adeyemi-Osowe observed that in spite of the national drawbacks, the Nigerian doctor had a lot to celebrate this week just for being alive.
“The penchant of state governments for seizing or slashing our salaries and paying it piecemeal at their convenience without interest has become a subject of folklore and hence cannot be allowed to continue.
“The era of blind loyalty is over. Let us all patiently wait to hear the plans of the presidential candidates for Nigeria, especially in the health sector, before pitching our political support tent,” he said.