By Chioma Obinna
LAGOS—Medical Doctors in private practice have urged the Federal government to declare a state of emergency in the health sector even as they unveiled a policy plan for medical practice in Nigeria.
The medical practitioners argued that most Primary Health Centres, PHCs, across the country, that would have put the health system in a better footing, are moribund and non-functional.
The doctors, under the auspices of Association of General Private and Medical Practitioners of Nigeria, AGPMPN, said their newly designed policy plan would address the problems bedevilling the health sector.
Addressing newsmen at its meeting and international partner’s workshop to disseminate the new policy plan in Lagos, the Chairman of AGPMPN, Dr. Akinrunde Akintade said one of the major ways to improve the health system was to properly fund the primary healthcare.
Akintade said: “If the private sector is engaged to take over these PHCs, with a better funding agreement, the centres will become centres of excellence for healthcare. There is no need of building more PHCs because the already constructed ones are not functional.
“We have more human resources in the private sector without utilization. Engaging the Private sector in the PHCs is a reasonable way out of solving the problems.”
Throwing light into the newly launched policy, he said the policy, formulated in line with the Federal government policy for the next five years, would be implemented and monitored by the association.
“The policy was actually developed because of Nigerian system. We realised that the health system in Nigeria has never been given an attention for especially from the private sector angle. The annoying thing is that private sector in Nigeria are actually contributing about 75 percent of the healthcare services and yet there is never a time even in the budget or policy implementations or in the capacity building that private sector have been included. Yet we still contribute a huge sum of amount to the system through taxation”, he said.