By Ejike Agbata
NATIONAL body of Medical and Dental Consultants’ Association of Nigeria (MDCAN), Sunday in Awka, regretted the outbreak of Lassa fever in parts of the country while commiserating with families of those who lost their lives in the outbreak.
In a press briefing held after its 2 Day National Executive Council (NEC) meeting in Awka, President of the association, Ngim Ngim, while reading a communique, called on members of the public to come up with measures to eradicate the rodents responsible for transmission of the deadly Lassa virus.
The communique further urged relevant agencies of the federal and state governments to quickly take steps to contain the outbreak and ensure availability of all drugs needed for treatment of infected persons adding that the association is willing and ready to work with the government to address the challenge.
Other parts of the communique read; doctors are reminded of the need to always observe universal precautions while attending to patients. These measures include but are not limited to use of personal protective devices, and hospitals are enjoined to make these available at all times to safeguard lives of medical personnel and other health workers.
It condemned rising cases of insecurity perpetrated by militia groups, criminals and cultists across the country, while urging the federal government to as a matter of urgency, “take immediate steps to contain the security challenges, including kidnapping across length and breadth of Nigeria in order to restore confidence of her citizens and foreigners alike and boost social and economic activities”.
All relevant organs of government should expedite action towards resolving all outstanding issues regarding remuneration and welfare of her members and other healthcare workers.
The group recommended establishment of medical universities by federal government in order to enhance funding and capacity for undergraduate medical training and allied courses in the country.
This according to MDCAN will improve the doctor-population ratio which is put at 1 – 4000 in Nigeria as against 1 – 6oo and positively impact on healthcare delivery in Nigeria. MDCAN is ready to liase with relevant agencies of government to work out details of its implementation.
“Government is urged to increase funding to the currently existing medical colleges in Nigeria to improve facilities and quality of training.” It concluded.
Others present at the briefing include, Chairman, Local Organising Committee, (NEC), Amaechi Nwachukwu, Secretary General, MDCAN, Affiong Ibanga, National Treasurer, Chidi Okafor and Public Relations Officer, Onah Stanley.
The 2 day meeting also had in attendance, former Minister of Health, Onyebuchi Chukwu who chaired the opening ceremony.