By Yekini Jimoh
The Nigerian Medical Association (NMA), Kogi State chapter, has urged the Federal Government to give utmost priority to doctors’ welfare to ensure effective and quality healthcare delivery across the country, and avoid brain drain.
The state’s Chairman of NMA, Dr Omakoji Oyiguh, made the call at the 2021 Annual General Meeting (AGM) and Scientific Conference of NMA in Lokoja, with the theme: “The Deteriorating Security Situation In Nigeria: Implications For Healthcare Delivery.”
Oyiguh stressed the need to ensure good working environment for doctors with better standard of living and quality of life, saying, “our association has a role to protect the public in the access to quality healthcare delivery.”
He commended the management of Federal Medical Centre Lokoja (FMCL) for helping to improve service delivery and ensure good working environment for doctors, particularly the resident doctors in the centre.
According to him, it is not politically correct to employ doctors as federal government and again lack the capacity to institute the process for their payment, in a manner that resident doctors are employed and not paid for several months on the job.
“It is clearly not in the public interest and national security for the federal government to continue to create the environment for continuous brain drain, as doctors are frustrated to deliver on training and service.”
“NMA in Kogi, will continue to support any effort to ensure that resident doctors are treated properly,” he said.
Oyiguh commended Governor Yahaya Bello, for giving approval for the implementation of Revised CONMESS 2014 for the state doctors, saying it had exited Kogi from the list of states having such welfare issues with their doctors.
The NMA chairman further lamented the increasing menace of kidnapping of medical doctors, which recently affected one of their members from hospital facility in the state.
“While the security agency will continue to do their work, it is now important for all citizens to become more proactive in community policing, particularly providing actionable intelligence.
He stressed the need for all doctors across the state to begin to participate in the community policing effort of government in their areas.
Also speaking, the former NMA National President, Prof. Michael Ogirima, urged the federal government to critically look and implement those points agreed upon with the Nigerian Association of Residents Doctors (NARD) in order to call off the ongoing strike.
Ogirima, who is the Provost the School of Health Sciences, Federal University Lokoja, stressed that the residents doctors were fighting a just cause, saying medical doctors needed to be well taken care of in order to be focused on their jobs.
He, however appealed to the residents doctors to answer the call of the federal government so that the masses would not suffer too much due to their industrial action.
The Key Note Speaker, Mr C.U. Ahanatu, the Deputy Director Operations and Intelligence, Department of State Service (DSS), Kogi State, urged the general public to minimise their media social activities, relationship with people and response to incidents.
He note that there was improvement in the security situation in Kogi State compared to other states, due to the strong synergy among the security agencies in the state.