David Williams
Sun, Aug 13, 2023 8:50 PM

Nigeria's Medical Association Calls for Increased Health Budget Allocation

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Nigeria's Medical Association Calls for Increased Health Budget Allocation
The Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) has urged the federal government to allocate a minimum of 15% of the national budget to healthcare, in compliance with the Abuja declaration. The NMA also emphasized the need for improved welfare packages to address the brain drain syndrome and combat the proliferation of quacks in the healthcare industry.

In a bid to rescue Nigeria's ailing healthcare system, the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) has called on the federal government to allocate a significant share of the national budget to the health sector. The NMA has challenged the government to honor the Abuja declaration, which stipulates a minimum allocation of 15% of the annual budget to healthcare.

The NMA believes that such an increased budgetary allocation would serve as an initial step towards demonstrating the government's commitment to the growth and development of the country's struggling healthcare system. With improved funds, the sector would be better equipped to address the numerous challenges it currently faces.

One of the key issues highlighted by the NMA is the brain drain syndrome affecting Nigeria's healthcare workforce. The association argues that the government must prioritize providing better welfare packages for healthcare professionals to stem this exodus. Without adequate incentives and support, qualified healthcare workers are more likely to seek opportunities abroad, further exacerbating the brain drain problem.

Dr. Babatunde Rosiji, Chairman of the NMA in Ekiti State, emphasized the urgency of the situation, stating, "The neglect of the health sector is already leading to the proliferation of quacks who are now even brazenly parading themselves as doctors and even conducting graduations to induct their apprentices to the 'Medical Profession'". The NMA warns that if action is not taken promptly, the consequences could be dire.

The rising cost of drugs and medical consumables is another pressing concern raised by the NMA. The removal of fuel subsidies coupled with the declining value of the naira has led to a significant increase in healthcare expenses. This has made it increasingly difficult for healthcare workers to commute daily to hospitals and jeopardizes the delivery of quality healthcare services.

Highlighting the need for urgent action, the NMA called on the federal government to roll out comprehensive palliatives to alleviate the hardships faced by the citizens. The association also urged the government to address the soaring cost of drugs and medical consumables and ensure universal coverage of citizens through the National Health Insurance Scheme.

The NMA commended the Ekiti State Governor, Mr. Biodun Abayomi Oyebanji, for his commitment to the welfare of workers in the state and called on other state governors to follow suit.

The association also expressed solidarity with the Cross Rivers Branch of NMA over the continued detention of Professor Ekanem-Ephraim, calling for her immediate and unconditional release. It further appealed to the security operatives and the Inspector General of Police to rescue her from her abductors.

In conclusion, the Nigerian Medical Association believes that dedicating a significant portion of the national budget to healthcare is a crucial step towards realizing a robust and accessible healthcare system. By addressing the brain drain syndrome, eliminating quackery, and improving welfare packages for healthcare professionals, Nigeria can safeguard the provision of quality healthcare for all its citizens.

Source of content: OOO News 2023-08-13 News

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