The President of the Nigerian Association of Resident Doctors, Dr Orji Innocent, raised the alarm over the huge number of members of the association moving out of the country for greener pastures, saying that the association has lost over 2,000 members in the last two years.
He said if the situation is not tackled, it may degenerate to a point where Nigerians would wake up one day and discover there are no more doctors in the hospitals.
Innocent raised the concern on Saturday while fielding questions from journalists after the presentation of a communiqué issued at the end of the association’s conference in Uyo.
He said a survey conducted in December revealed that over 2,000 members left for greener pastures.
Meanwhile, in the communiqué, the association called for increased budgetary funding of the healthcare sector in the country, to the tune of 15 per cent annual budgetary allocation to improve the quality of healthcare delivery.
The communiqué read in part, “The National Executive Council welcomes the committee set up by the Federal Government to mitigate the brain drain in the health sector.
“The association urges a speedy conclusion of the task and immediate implementation of their recommendations to improve healthcare service delivery and reduce the emigration of skilled healthcare workers from the country.
“NEC calls for increased funding of the healthcare sector in the country, to the tune of 15 per cent annual budgetary allocation in line with the 2001 Abuja Declaration for healthcare financing in Africa and global best practices as well as the digitalisation of the healthcare services to improve the quality of healthcare delivery to Nigerian citizens.”
The President said NEC urged the Chief Medical Directors of tertiary hospitals in the country to take responsibility for security in their various hospitals as NARD would no longer continue to watch her members being assaulted by staff members, patients, relatives or security operatives.
He said the association called on the Inspector General of Police to investigate and arrest the perpetrators of the illegal shooting of one of its members in Delta and to ensure they are adequately punished to serve as a deterrent to others.