Brain Drain: Beyond minimum wage, give doctors welfare package — Lagos NMABy Gabriel Olawale

President, Association of Clinical and Academic Physiotherapists of Nigeria, ACAPN, Dr. Chris  Okafor has expressed concern over inconducive environment which he said was endangering the practice of physiotherapy in the country.  

Speaking during the commemoration of 2021 World Physiotherapist Day, Okafor explained that despite the prominent role played by physiotherapist s in patients’ recovery process; many tertiary health institutions in the country don’t have professional physiotherapists.

For instance, there is a General Hospital in one of the states in the country that supposed to have at least 100 physiotherapists but only have two.  

“While medical doctors emphasis the use of drugs, a surgeon emphasis use of surgery, the physiotherapist emphasises the use of his hands, skills and some eletromedical equipment, exercise among others.

“Physiotherapy basically is an aspect of healthcare that deals with prevention; treatment and rehabilitation of various diseases such as stroke, low back pain, neck pain, arthritis, and pregnancy induces back pain, sport injury among others. 

Physiotherapistsuse approaches that do not cause harm to the patient.

He hinted that due to lack of conducive environment majority of their members had left the country for greener pasture where they can practice optimally, “many hospitals in the country do not have required equipment to offer the service while some are parading obsolete equipment.

One out three physiotherapy graduate leave the country and this in turn affect healthcare delivery in so many ways. 

While calling on President Muhammadu Buhari to include a member of ACAPN in the Health Reform Committee, he admonished Nigerians not to patronise quacks .

Speaking ahead of the Association’s annual scientific conference slated for 18th to 23rd of October, Vice Chairperson, Lagos Chapter of Association of Clinical Academic Physiotherapists of Nigeria, Dr. Happiness Aweto said that COVID-19 help to open the eye of people to the role of physiotherapists in handling COVID-19 patients. Physiotherapists are those who work on the chest condition of COVID-19 patients, they take care of respiratory system and heart related issues.”

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