Dayo Johnson, Akure
A former President of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Chief Wole Olanipekun, has lamented the rate at which Nigerian medical doctors leave the country to practise abroad.
Olanipekun said the mass exit and inadequate number of medical doctors in the country was worrisome as “the healthcare delivery system in Nigeria is collapsing and also in chaotic and appalling situation”.
He spoke while delivering the 3rd founder’s day lecture of the University of Medical Sciences,Ondo held under the theme, ‘Ethics, Law and Medicine As Foundation for National Development’.
According to him, this is lacking in proportion to World Health Organisation’s (WHO) standard, which says Nigeria needs no fewer than 237,000 medical doctors.
He pointed out that medical practice in the country was undergoing brain-drain, noting that government at levels was not recruiting doctors to take care of teeming patients across hospitals in the country.
Olanipekun lamented that about 40,000 of the 75,000 registered medical doctors in the nation were practising outside Nigeria in 2017.
“ To compound the situation ,there has been no major recruitment of doctors, whether by the states or the Federal Government and even those recruited by them only consider their employment as a temporary fix, transitory event if you like, until they can conclude plans to emigrate to favourable climes,”the former NBA President said.
According to him, the University College Hospital (UCH), Ibadan used to rank among 10 best teaching hospitals in the Commonwealth until its fortune nosedived in the mid-eighties.
“I have my serious doubts if any teaching hospital in Nigeria can be counted among the first 200 teaching hospitals within Commonwealth of nations now,”he said.
Olanipekun noted that healthcare delivery system contribute to the national development of developed countries and improved their national revenue.