The high rate of doctors disengaging from hospitals and other healthcare centres in Katsina State has been identified as one of the major challenges affecting quality health care services available for residents of the state.
The state commissioner for health, Engr Yakubu Nuhu Danja disclosed this while speaking at the commissioning ceremony of the Late Hajiya Mariya Masari 24-Bed Comprehensive Female Ward, donated by Alhaji Salisu Mamman Continental, at General Hospital, Katsina.
Danja said the Hospital Systems Management Board (HSMB) is faced with difficulty in attracting and retaining the health workforce in the system and attributed it to remunerations, adding that there has been a decline in the number of doctors by almost half between 2020 and 2022 in the system.
He explained that the numbers of consultants and medical officers in 2020 were 219, and have gradually reduced to 112 in the year 2022, coupled with insufficient number of other skilled health workforce to cope with the increasing demand for healthcare services in the state.
The commissioner identified other reasons for the dwindling number of doctors to include, “Security challenges in some LGAs that have secondary facilities resulting in staff seeking for employment elsewhere if they cannot get posted to other facilities, brain drain to NGOs and other organisations that have better remuneration packages than the state government.”
He called for residency training programmes, replacement and special incentives for the health workers as some of the ways to address the challenges facing the hospitals in the state.
While commissioning the 24-bed Comprehensive Ward, Governor Aminu Bello Masari thanked Alhaji Salisu Mamman for appreciating the effort of the state government in the health sector and constructing the edifice to benefit the masses.