Prof. Jesse Otegbayo, the Chief Medical Director (CMD), University College Hospital (UCH), Ibadan, has expressed concern over the mass emigration of doctors to other countries.
Otegbayo said this at the inauguration of the renovated Public Relations Department of the hospital on Monday, in Ibadan.
According to him, the brain drain plaguing the country’s health sector is due to lack of job satisfaction, inadequate facilities, poor working conditions, and poor remuneration.
“We are worried about the exodus of doctors, not only because of its short-term consequences but also, because of its long term effect. It will surely be a problem tomorrow.
“The situation in the 1980s, during the mass emigration of doctors, is better than what is happening today. Then, we had younger doctors who were receiving specialist training to fill the gap created by the consultants who left.
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“Today, however, both the old and the young are leaving. The question now is: who is going to fill the gap?
“The implication of this trend, if it continues in another 10 years, is that there will be a vacuum and the number of doctors remaining will not be enough to cater for our teeming population. This is highly worrisome,’’ he said.
The CMD said that the refurbished PR department was occasioned by the management’s decision to create a good working environment for the hospital staff members.
“The two cardinal focus of this administration is patients’ comfort and welfare of members of staff.
“Creating good and conducive work environment for our staff is pivotal to quality healthcare delivery and patients’ care.
“When you take care of staff welfare, it will have a positive effect on their jobs and influence patients’ care positively.
“What we have achieved here today at the PR department is what we intend to do to the entire hospital. There is going to be a complete transformation of the entire facility.
“Due to shortage of funds, we are doing the renovation and improving the facilities in the hospital in installments.
“We want a hospital that is beautiful and at par with international standard. Providing facilities and good working environment is part of our actions to save the situation of medical brain drain in our country,” he said.
In his remarks, the Head of PR Department, Mr. Akintoye Akinrinola, commended and appreciated the efforts of the CMD.
Akinrinola said: “We are the voice and image-making department of the hospital.
“Having a good work environment will constantly motivate us in the delivery of our duties and also help the ultimate goal of the hospital in providing good and quality patients’ care,” he said.