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By Daud Olatunji
The new Chairman of the Association of General and Private Medical Practitioners of Nigeria, Ogun State chapter, Dr. Rabiu Kusimo, says the reason Nigerians are not getting good treatment from hospitals in the country is because government treats private practitioners as competitors.
He urged government at all levels to begin to see private practitioners as partners in progress in the health sector, lamenting that taxes and levies the private hospitals pay are becoming unbearable.
Kusimo, who is also the Medical Director of Lafiya Medical Centre, Abeokuta, stated this shortly after he was inaugurated alongside other members of the executive of the association at its 25th Annual General Meeting held at the state Secretariat of the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) in Abeokuta.
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He said, “To be very modest, we are not getting the best in Nigerian hospitals, but the truth is that where people get the best, government champions it.
“Government does not come out the way our government does things here. What government does in other places is that they stay back and support private initiatives.
“There are governmental institutions to take care of health, but government is there to make sure that everybody is covered under insurance, so, insurance covers you which makes you not to bother when you are going to hospital. Because people are sick and they cannot afford health facilities, their health status gets worse.
“Also, government should stop seeing private institution as a competitor and they should support private initiatives. Taxes and levies private hospitals pay are becoming unbearable. If government sees us as a people who are trying to complement their efforts in the health sector by delivering good healthcare to the people, then the state of health would get better”.
Kushimo added that if government could work with regulatory bodies and ensure that private medical hospitals are registered with the bodies, quackery would become a thing of the past.
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