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Nurses tell FG, “Brain drain: Show us we are valued, appreciated.”



On Monday, nurses made a plea to Prof. Muhammad Pate, the Coordinating Minister of Health and Social Welfare, requesting that he provide sufficient funding for infrastructure and labor in order to revolutionize Nigeria’s health system.

In an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Monday in Lagos, Mr. Toba Odumosu, Secretary of the National Association of Nigerian Nurses and Midwives (NANNM), Lagos Zone, made the request.

Odumosu further pleaded with the minister to guarantee that the health sector’s financial allotment complied with the 15 percent Abuja Declaration agreement.

At their April 2001 meeting in Abuja, the heads of state of the African Union agreed to set a goal of dedicating at least 15 percent of their national budgets to the advancement of the health sector.

The health system has been woefully underfunded for years, according to Odumosu, which has caused medical professionals to leave the country.

Additionally, he told NAN that the current system in Nigeria does not assist in the professional growth of midwives and nurses.

Therefore, he pleaded with the minister to see to it that strong incentive programs and sufficient workforce development were implemented in order to deter brain-brain in the health sector.

He recommended that the minister eliminate pay gaps for healthcare professionals in order to provide a feeling of inclusion, fulfillment, and community for each and every one of them.

Odumosu stated that while adjustments were made for medical physicians’ wage structures, other health professionals’ salary structures remained unaltered, citing salary inequalities as the cause of a string of strikes by the NANNM and Joint Health Sector Unions.

He noted that there were numerous basic Healthcare Centers (PHCs) in Nigeria that were not in operation and that a new approach to the country’s basic healthcare system growth was necessary.

The non-operational PHCs, in his opinion, were placing a burden on secondary and tertiary healthcare.

“In order for PHCs to provide citizens with high-quality, preventive healthcare, we must increase their budget.

He remarked, “The minister is familiar with the terrain; he has a wealth of experience in the PHC system.”

In response to the Nursing and Midwifery Council of Nigeria’s proposal to create a migration strategy aimed at reducing brain drain in the healthcare industry, he stated: “What we anticipate are measures that should motivate individuals to remain in the country.”

Working under a system that doesn’t allow one to practice to the fullest extent of one’s professional qualification and training is one of the main worries for nurses.

Imagine a situation where the country’s tertiary hospitals would not allow midwives to deliver babies unless the Federal Ministry of Health issued a circular first.

“How do you expect people to stay or thrive there if you seal up the ceiling of legitimate aspirations?” he posed.

He said that the policies ought to demonstrate how much nurses are respected, acknowledged, and treasured.

Odumosu urged the federal government to make sure that a diverse range of health experts are represented on the boards of health ministries, departments, and agencies, as well as in the cabinet.

“Sulaiman Bello served as our minister of health under the administration of Goodluck Jonathan, the last time we had a nurse in that role.

He claimed that nurses “want to be included and feel like they belong in the healthcare service delivery system. They want to be members of boards and take part in leadership roles.”

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