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Resident Doctors Urge Tinubu to Increase Health Funding

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The Nigerian Association of Resident Doctors has urged the incoming administration of President-Elect, Sen. Bola Tinubu, to increase funding for health.

The association’s National President, Dr. Innocent Orji, made the call in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria on Sunday in Abuja.

He said that the increase should be to at least 15 per cent of the nation’s yearly budget, in line with the Abuja Declaration of 2001.

He added that ”to be honest, an increase in health funding will help to tackle the myriad of problems bedevilling the sector.

“Secondly, we expect improved infrastructure development from all aspects, be it architectural, technological, or human.”

The national president also said that NARD members are expecting improved remuneration to tackle the increasing economic hardship and dwindling naira value, adding that some doctors were still being owed several months of salaries and allowances, especially in the State Tertiary Health Institutions.

Orji said, ”as an association and as healthcare professionals, we expect improved conditions.”

He also urged the government to give priority attention to training, both within and outside the country, with a special focus on primary healthcare.

On the issue of brain drain of medical professionals, the association’s president said ”it is one of the biggest challenges presently facing the health sector. There is a need for government to take urgent action.

“So, we want the incoming government to identify and solve the root cause of the syndrome and take deliberate measures toward reversing it.”

He, however, said that the challenge of brain drain was fueled by poor health infrastructure due to poor funding and inadequate training, especially in highly specialised areas.

Orji added that poor remuneration, lack of incentives and welfare packages, unsafe work environment, and insecurity were other factors influencing the migration of medical personnel to other countries.

He, however, said that as an association, it is always open and ready to partner with the government in resolving challenges.

He congratulated the incoming administration, wishing it the best as it gets set to pilot the affairs of the nation.

(NAN)

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