88 percent of medical doctors in Nigeria are actively seeking employment opportunities abroad.
Credit: NOI Polls
This is the finding of a survey conducted by a polling institution, NOI Polls in collaboration with the Nigeria Health Watch.
The survey found that the emigration of health workers has become a lingering problem, with a staggering 88 percent of medical doctors choosing to leave if presented with the opportunity.
The highlighted reasons for the trend include promise of better working condition and career progression abroad, with a very large percentage of medical doctors all gloom about the sinking fortunes of their profession in Nigeria.
Credit: NOI Polls
“98 percent of doctors interviewed, high taxes and deduction of salaries; 92 percent, no work satisfaction; 91 percent, poor salaries and emoluments; the huge knowledge gap.”
Chief Executive Officer of NOI Polls, Dr Ben Ihua stated while presenting the findings of the survey in Abuja on Friday.
Also speaking, the head communication advisory, Nigeria Health Watch, Dr Ifeanyi Nsofor called for the creation of an enabling environment to encourage commercial investments in the health care sector.
“We have got to the extent that even as a doctor in Nigeria, there is no dignity in it.”
“Can government create an enabling environment where people who want to invest in the sector can come and set up partnership with existing hospitals in the country so that Nigerians at the end of the day will get protected?”
On his part, president of the Nigeria Medical Association, Dr Mike Ogirimah represented by the chairman of the organization in the FCT, Dr Chiedozie Achunwa said the country needed more doctors to meet the World Health Organization’s standard on doctor – patient ratio.
“We have a situation where doctors are on call every day of the week, every week of the months, and every month of the year.”
A pathologist at the National Hospital Abuja, Dr Hakeem Lawal advocated a legal framework that would improve the working environment of doctors.
The problem of emigration is however not unique to professionals in the health care sector. Working abroad has over the years been established as a dream of every Nigerian, skilled or unskilled.
The promise of better working conditions abroad – the major reason spurring the trend, has in some occasions been found to be phantasmal, but the hopelessness in an economy perpetually stunted by institutionalized corruption has made even that prospect whose fortunes are cloudy worth venturing into.