The Minister of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire, has said that the Muhammadu Buhari government will do everything possible to discourage “physicians’ brain drain” from the country.
Ehanire said this on Friday in Abuja after inspecting work on the new cancer centre at the National Hospital, Abuja.
“I have heard the challenge of doctors leaving the country. We have plans to provide better funding for our hospitals in Nigeria and make such migration unattractive,” he said.
He said that the hospital performed well during COVID-19 pandemic in the country, pledging that the government will do everything possible to ensure that doctors will prefer to remain and work in country, a statement corroborated by the Chief Medical Director of the hospital, Dr Jaf Momoh, who indicated that the hospital has introduced incentives to encourage medical personnel to stay in the country.
On the new cancer centre, the minister advised the hospital management to spend wisely, properly maintain the facilities when completed and seek alternative sources of funding.
He praised the hospital administrators for its prompt services to patients and advised them to be prepared for a possible resurgence of the COVID-19 pandemic as other countries are now experiencing.
“Schools are resuming, people are traveling in and out the country so we must be prepared for any emergency,” he warned.
Also speaking, the hospital Board Chairman, Mrs Patricia Etteh, expressed regrets that although the hospital just celebrated 20 years of existence, it was still experiencing lot of challenges.
Appealing for assistance to the hospital, Etteh called on the government to assist in making the National hospital one of the best health facilities available.
Stakeholders report that in the past two decades, there have been a marked growth in the migration of medical doctors.