The Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) has issued a two-weeks extension notice to federal government to reconstitute the board of Nigeria Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria (NMDC) after the expiration of its September 30 2018, deadline.
President of the Association, Dr, Francis Duyile in his Independent message to felicitate with Nigerians at 58, noted that the group is though aware that there is progress being made to reconstitute the Council dissolve in July 2015, but will not accept any further delay beyond October 14, 2018.
Duyile lamented, “The dissolution of the Medical Dental Council of Nigeria (MDCN) has caused a lot of damages to medical practice in the country.
“The colossal damage brought about by the absence of the regulatory body is almost irreversible. Nigeria perhaps could be the only country that allows the practice of medicine to go on without regulation, even for one day”, the NMA leader bemoaned.
The leadership of the Association also warned that on no account should the Council responsible for the regulation of the profession ever be dissolved to safeguard the health of all Nigerians.
It blamed the continued poor performance in the health sector to the lackluster attitude of government which has refused to implement policies that itself put in place to promote health of Nigerians.
According to Duyile, “In the three years of this administration, the nation has faced difficult times in an attempt to reposition the nation. We observed that these efforts have not yet brought the required results that will ease the suffering of Nigerians.
“In particular is the failure to fully implement the National Health Act 2014, which we believe will guarantee Nigerians Universal Health Coverage (UHC)”, noted the NMA leader.
His words: “It is important to reiterate that Universal Health Coverage shall not only increase access to health care delivery but also make it affordable through the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) with the Community Based Health Insurance Scheme (CBSHIP) as an integral component and will be complemented by the Basic Healthcare Provision fund and other sources of fund from luxury items and ‘sin’ taxes”.
The doctors’ group also called on federal government to immediately release the white paper of the Alhaji Mahmud Yayale Ahmed-led Committee on Inter-Professional Relationships in the Public Health Sector and to speedily commence the implementation of its recommendations as a way to arrest the tide of disharmony in the Health sector.
“We are confident of the pedigree and track records of the Committee members, and the thoroughness of their activities strongly suggest that they would not have misdirected the nation”, wrote Duyile.
However, despite the shortcomings, the Association thinks there is hope for the country urging Nigerians to keep faith with the government and diligently contribute their quota to the ‘change mantra’ of the present administration.