The chief medical director of the University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital (UNTH) in Ituku Ozalla, Enugu State, Prof Obinna Onodugo, has rated Nigerian medical doctors among the best in the world.
Speaking at a symposium organised by the Enugu branch of the Association of Catholic Medical Doctors in Enugu, yesterday, Prof Onodugo, said Nigerians who travel abroad for medicare do so because of better facilities and not because of the competence of Nigerian doctors and health personnel.
He stated that his survey on the performance of medical doctors globally revealed that Nigerians are among the best in the world as healthcare providers in America, Europe, South America, Asia and other parts of Africa continue to recruit them in large numbers.
The UNTH CMD however, identified poor wages, inadequate facilities and low incentives as some of the major problems facing healthcare personnel in the country, adding that an increased budget allocation to the health sector was overdue. While warning doctors against greed, Prof Obinna Onodugo submitted that “we have that moral responsibility to practice the profession of medicine as Catholics in accordance with God’s doctrines”.
In his remarks, the medical director of the National Orthopaedic Hospital, Enugu, Dr Cajetan Nwadinigwe, regretted that in recent time the fortunes of doctors had been dwindling and challenged them to rewind themselves to meet current challenges.
He advised doctors, especially the younger ones, to invest on property and avoid luxury items like cars, stressing that the value goes down the next minute.
Earlier, the chairman of the association, Prof Bede Chidozie Ibe, said one of the objectives that informed the theme of the symposium was to bring entrepreneurship to the purview of the Nigerian doctors, adding that it was important to strengthen the level of entrepreneurial education of the Nigerian doctor.
According to Prof Ibe, former deputy vice chancellor, University of Nigeria, Enugu-Campus UNEC, “we want to increase the capacity of the doctor to see the length and breadth of the opportunities that exist within the larger economy that may bring about professional as well as financial reward and hopefully bring about the desired satisfaction in doctor’s life”.