Why young healthcare professionals are leaving Nigeria —ExpertPosted By: Admin
Lack of teamwork among healthcare professionals, governments’ policies cause brain drain- Omigbodun
Prof. , the Provost, College of Medicine, , made this known at the opening ceremony of the sixth Scientific Conference and Annual General Meeting of the .
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the five-day event is holding at the Theophilus lesi Hall, , .
Omigbodun said: “There is need for all healthcare professionals, such as nurses, physiotherapists, laboratory scientists, occupational therapists, educational therapists and others, to come together and work together as one bloc so that healthcare delivery can have great impact on the nation.
“As a Physician, I understand the importance of the healthcare team.
I know that I need to work as a team, because every member of a team has something excellent to contribute and there must be mutual respect and understanding.
“One of the reasons, among others, why we are having mass exodus is because we are fighting ourselves.
“But, when we are together as healthcare professionals, we are unstoppable, unbreakable and unbendable, because ultimately, the main objective is to have excellent healthcare delivery.
“Right now, there is massive migration of the best of the best as every body want to leave the country, particularly the young people.
The provost said that the policy on employment procedure, also compounded the problem.
She said that was making it cumbersome for the fresh graduated healthcare professionals to get job, thereby making them to leave the country.
“I was told that when you want to open a job space in the university, you have to go to the office of the Head of Service in Abuja to ask for space.
“Now, if I want to employ and identify a very brilliant person, I should have the opportunity to make an informed decision as a leader; but now, I have to travel to Abuja many times to get permission.
“What is going on now is that our youths, who are just finishing from schools are looking for jobs.
“It will take two years for the office of Head of Service to open a job position; so, the youths decided to seek for jobs elsewhere.
“So far the employment decision is being made in Abuja, we are going to have mass exodus of our youths,” Omigbodun said.
She said the academics were facing a lot of constraints in carrying out their research works, which she said was not good enough.
Omigbodun said that the policy: “has made foreign grants from research funders to go directly to the .
“So, it can take up to a year to access the money from for research.
“Meanwhile, the research funders, who has given a timeline for execution of the research will eventually withdraw their money.
The provost, then urged the physiotherapists to make use of the meeting to deliberate and take useful decisions “that will promote healthcare system”.
According to her, most importantly, I want you to get involve in politics and policy; let us work together as a healthcare team to make sure that we save our nation from the current downpour that we are experiencing.
In his remarks, the National President of , Dr , said an event that led to the formation of the association in 2016 brought to the fore its mission.
“To promote professionalism and integrity in physiotherapy practice with a view to enhancing accountability, care, excellence and social responsibility among physiotherapy professionals in Nigeria,” he said.
Okafor said that the association took pleasure in mentoring students in the physiotherapy profession.
RE-NSP 2022 AGM COMMUNIQUE ALERT: A RAPE AND A WAR DECLARED ON THE NIGERIAN PHYSIOTHERAPISTS,THEIR SENSIBILITIES AND FUNDAMENTAL RIGHT TO FREEDOM OF ASSOCIATION.
The attention of the Association of Clinical and Academic Physiotherapists of Nigeria (ACAPN) has been drawn to the statements of the communique released and signed by the Nigeria Society of Physiotherapy (NSP) in their just concluded AGM 2022.
So far, the ACAPN leadership had decided to maintain a quiet posture until the release of this communique by NSP. This posture was not an acceptance of the many atrocities by NSP leadership but was in a bid to support the desired unity for our profession, Physiotherapy.
It is on record that NSP had reneged at many previous peace agreements aimed at reconciliation of the NSP and ACAPN. These include meetings mediated by MRTB in Lagos (September 2017, October 2019 and March 4, 2021, respectively) as well as the meeting facilitated by WCPT-Africa in Abuja (September 2019). In all these meetings, ACAPN AGM respected the agreements so reached while NSP reneged on them or out-rightly refused to endorse the agreements reached. Since its inception, ACAPN has stood for professional integrity and has tried to restore dignity in the profession. Even in spite of the initial insistence to a change of name from NSP to a new name (which was also the recommendation of both the September 2019 WCPT-A and the October 2019 MRTB Committees), ACAPN delegates at the MRTB reconciliatory meeting held on March, 2021 agreed to work in joint Transition committees with NSP delegates. ACAPN even conceded that the joint comnittee should use the name of NSP while negotiating matters concerning all Nigerian Physiotherapists at the level of the Ministry of Health and the WPT. This major sacrifice by ACAPN was made in the interest of peace and speedy reconciliation.
Regrettably, the NSP AGM Communique has confirmed how desperate and regardless to unity the present NSP leadership has become by officially announcing NSP‟s withdrawal from the peace and reconciliation process which every Nigerian Physiotherapist (home or abroad, clinician or academic) has been eagerly waiting for.
The question now is “who is holding back the peace and unity of Nigerian Physiotherapy family?”
In the said communique, it was also stated in items 3 to 5 that „the NSP AGM strongly condemned the conduct of Dr. Mrs. OlufunkeAkanle, the Registrar of the MRTBN, who for years, violated the Sub-section 2.1.6 of the Physiotherapists‟ Scheme of Service by licensing or renewing the license of individuals who were not in good standing with the NSP. With regards to that, the NSP AGM resolved that henceforth compliance certificate shall be issued by the NSP to all physiotherapists who are in compliance with the Code of Professional Ethics of the NSP, and without which the MRTBN shall NOT issue or renew their practice licenses‟.
The so called section referred to in the scheme of service is sub-section 2.1.6 which states that “Physiotherapists (GL-09) must comply with the code of conduct of professional Ethics of the NSP and MRTBN” is part of the duties of all physiotherapists and as long as the code of ethics of MRTBN is maintained the person is in good standing. Note that this code of conduct was floated when NSP was the only registered professional association for Nigerian Physiotherapists. That is not the case anymore. Besides this applied to GL-09 only and not to other Grade level Officers. The NSP should also be knowledgeable about Nigeria‟s Constitution on Freedom of Association. No one is against the compliance certificate which NSP wishes to issue her members. However, non-possession of such certificate SHOULD NOT deprive Physiotherapists from renewing their licenses with the MRTB. Today, Accountants like some other professions have 2 registered bodies. So ICAN does not have monopoly of membership.
Nigeria has over 6,000 registered Physiotherapists and the NSP could not boast of having 5% of the total registrants. We challenge NSP to publish the names of her members. We have foreign trained PTs as well as those in the diaspora. Will NSP dictate to the MRTBN not to register them?
The truth is that the era of monopoly in Physiotherapy profession has gone for good. The ACAPN, registered under the Nigerian Law with the Corporate Affairs Commission in 2017 (CAC/IT/NO 96954) has the same legal status as NSP. Although it has operated modestly without competition with NSP, however, with its fast growing membership, delay in reconciliation and now NSP‟s rejection of unity, may cause more danger for Physiotherapy in Nigeria.
It is very obvious that NSP has declared war against the Nigerian Physiotherapists (who for one reason or the other) decided not to identify as NSP members but have rather remained neutral in the ongoing division or those who have identified with ACAPN, hoping for a successful resolution and day of re-union. By NSP‟s declaration, such colleagues cannot be offered a government job as NSP has claimed that the Government Scheme of Service is only for NSP- registered members.
Does this wrong and cruel interpretation imply that there is no more freedom of association for Nigerian Physiotherapists to belong or not to belong to an Association as enshrined in the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria?
This is a direct assault on the sensibilities of the Nigerian Physiotherapists, young and old and should be resisted by all right thinking professionals.
Physiotherapists who have chosen to remain neutral or not to belong to NSP therefore call on all well-meaning Nigerian Physiotherapists at home and in the diaspora to condemn this oppressive tyranny by NSP leadership.
Our younger colleagues who graduated when there are already two professional Associations (both duly registered with the Federal Government) have a right to seek jobs from the same Federal Government even without belonging to any of the Associations. This callousness and oppression on our younger colleagues must be condemned, or our profession would be the loser.
By her recent communique, NSP has also officially and openly declared war on the Registrar of MRTB for her efforts to stand by the truth through engagement in anti-NSP actions including, non-payment of NSP dues by the MRTBN Registrar, undue interference with the constitution of MRTBN board, the recognition of another association of Physiotherapists‟ other than NSP, among others. As a result, the NSP frowned at these and seriously warned the MRTBN registrar to desist from them to avoid future disastrous consequences.
Does the above statement imply that the NSP expects that the MRTBN Registrar should use her office to oppress and torment members of ACAPN (an Association of Physiotherapists who opposed injustice and manipulation of the NSP constitution at the Kaduna Conference/election in 2016) and other Physiotherapists who do not belong NSP? This is malicious indeed!!
The ACAPN considers that the statements addressed to the MRTBN Registrar in the afore- mentioned communique as tantamount to bullying, reckless, uncalled for and a denigration of the status of a good professional body.
MRTBN regulates seven professions and not Physiotherapy alone. If the registrar happens to be an Occupational Therapist, would the NSP discredit him or her like that? Is it the job of the Board to collect the Annual dues of the 7 different professions that it regulates? Do we watch as the Registrar of a Federal Government parastatal is being tormented and threatened on social media by a group of „supposed professionals‟ who are meant to be under her Board‟s regulation? This is wrong and should be condemned by all or the registrar will be prone to further open abuse and disrespect from even younger colleagues.
Finally, the request on the Minister of State for Health by the NSP President just a few weeks ago (as revealed at the recent MRTB Stakeholders meeting) to merge MRTB with other Federal Government Boards when viewed alongside the recent NSP‟s Communique (which
out-rightly jettisoned a long and genuine peace process supervised by the MRTBN) suggests more than the eyes can see. The life and future of physiotherapy in Nigeria is further threatened by this unguarded action.
Indeed, this public assault on the sensibility of the Nigerian Physiotherapists is uncalled for and the perpetrators should be immediately called to order by our respected elders and stakeholders.
In concusion, ACAPN and the entire peace loving Nigerian Physiotherapists will continue to stand for the truth and speak for professionalism in Physiotherapy. We are still committed to peace, unity, equity and justice towards a united body of Physiotherapists in Nigeria. However NSP‟s decision to close the reconcịiation window may force a decision on ACAPN (as a legitimate, registered professional body with huge content of physiotherapy intellectuals) to operate independently in order to save the profession from the claws of cabals who have exhibited no mission to advance Physiotherapy in Nigeria.
Posted By: Admin
Signed : Professor R.A Adedoyin Founding President & Chairman Ministerial Advocacy Committee.
Professor B.O.A Adegoke Chairman, Board of Trustees, ACAPN.
Dr A.T Onigbinde Secretary, Board of Trustees, ACAPN.
DrJibril Mohammed General Secretary, ACAPN.
Dr U.A.C Okafor President, ACAPN
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