Says 1,000 needed to replace exited scores
By Chioma Obinna
Medical doctors under the employ of Lagos State government on Monday decried acute shortage of medical doctors in hospitals across the state, disclosing that, in 2018 alone, a total of 250 doctors left even as they appealed to the State government to urgently replace exited medical doctors.
The medical doctors under the auspices of Medical Guild who explained that the exit of the doctors also threatened that the exit of the doctors have affected smooth medical services in the state threatened that if nothing is done regarding the replacement, the body may be forced to take actions that may affect healthcare services in the state.
Addressing a press conference in Lagos on their upcoming Scientific Conference themed: “Lagos State Health Scheme: The facts, the myths”, the Chairman of Medical Guild, Dr Saheed Babajide who told journalists that doctors in Lagos were very angry due to the workload on them added that many more doctors are leaving the shores of the country for greener pastures abroad.
Stating that the State government should use the exit replacement system which has been in place through the Head of Service and not the Governor, Babajide explained that about 1,000 doctors are needed in the system to replace the scores of doctors that exited the system.
“This exit replacement of staff should be done in phases, with about 25 per cent being done by the end of 2019, another 25 per cent in January 2020. The remaining 50 per cent should be completed within the first quarter of next year.
“Our members are angry and agitating. Many of the doctors are falling ill. Some are down with stroke. A doctor in Lagos sees between 50 to 100 doctors daily depending on his or her base. Our belief is that an improvement in welfare will go a long way in stemming from the current brain –drain that the service is experiencing. By the end of December, if nothing is done, members will take a decision.
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“Incentives such as housing loans and car loans would help boost morale. Another step which would be useful is the exemption of call duty from taxation.”
Further, Babajide rejected the new minimum wage by the state government saying, they were not part of the negotiation that brought about the minimum wage.
He also demanded the extension of medical doctors’ retirement age from 60 to 65 years as it was done for teachers in the state.