Doctors migrating abroad causing manpower crisis – NMA

The Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) has said the rate at which doctors are migrating for greaner pastures posed a serious manpower crisis in the health sector.

The doctors raised the alarm at the opening ceremony of the NMA Anambra Chapter’s Physicians’ Week and Scientific Conference held in Nnewi.

NAN reports that Dr Jide Onyekwelu, the Secretary-General of NMA, who delivered the lecture, said the burden of brain drain on the country was huge as it was expensive to train a medical doctor.

Onyekwelu said while the UN standard recommended an average of one doctor to 500 patients, the ratio had dropped to about 1:5000 due to the declining number of doctors in the country.

He called on the Nigerian government to find out what made practicing outside the country more attractive to Nigerian doctors.

“Brain drain has devastated our medical sector. Nigerian doctors are well trained, that is why they are well sought after elsewhere but our government does not appreciate the quality of our doctors, so they leave to other countries.

“But they still travel to those countries where they are to see them, the same people they refused to make comfortable here,” he said.