Minister reiterates efforts to stem medical tourism
MINISTER of State for Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire, has reiterated that President Muhammadu Buhari – led administration would not relent in his effort to halt medical tourism. Enahire, who spoke at the investiture of the 19th President of the National Postgraduate Medical College of Nigeria (NPMCN), Prof. Ademola Abayomi Olaitan, disclosed that medical tourism costs the country over $1billion yearly. According to him, “Nigerians travel abroad for treatment due to poor service delivery in the country. We need to work more on our health care services in Nigeria, improve in our attitude to patients and also make sure we have the best equipment’s by so doing Nigerians will no longer travel out to get treated.”
He further said that the federal government hope to set up a primary health care centre in every political ward so that no one would have to walk more than 5km to any primary health centre.Enahire who said that medical tourism is a slap on the faces of all present and loss of confidence in the health sector has to be reversed expressed: “The relationship between health ministry and the National Postgraduate Medical College of Nigeria go a long way beyond seeking partnership in capacity building in the area of leadership and finance. The health sector was gradually gaining notoriety as one of the most strike-ridden institution or sector in Nigeria.
“If we are to manage hospitals, we should try to expand the training management. Management and governance are the two areas where we have weakness the reason for me why Nigerians travel abroad for treatment is due to poor service delivery,” he said.For Enahire, industrial disharmony was due to wrong application of dearth of management skills in the sector. The issue of attitude calls for attitudinal change in the way health care workers relate with patients. He urged all stakeholders to find a way out of this present quagmire as there is need to add management training in the curriculum of the health sector as well as financial management.
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