The Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria has advised freshly inducted foreign-trained physicians to think about practicing in the nation rather than leaving for greener pastures overseas.
Many of the doctors who have emigrated to other nations, according to the MDCN, are now regretting their decisions because they are subjected to discrimination.
This was stated on Thursday during the induction ceremony for 469 medical school graduates and eight dental school graduates, according to the council's registrar, Dr. Tajudeen Sanusi.
He said, “People continue to say that they want to emigrate. If you go out, have a mission. You can avail yourself of the best facilities there, in terms of training. But always remember that there is no other country better than your own, and think of coming back. Please, the issue of ‘Japa’ won’t do anybody any good.
“Some of those abroad are already regretting that they ought to have come back. Later in your career over there, when you start experiencing some kind of discrimination, you will know that you have succeeded in wasting your time. We advise that when you go there, always have it in mind that you need to come back home and render care to your people.”
Sanusi also advised the freshly appointed doctors from taking part in any strikes by medical associations.
While physicians have the constitutional right to freedom of assembly, according to the council, they are not considered to be members of the Association of Resident Doctors.
He said, “By the council policy, you are not members of the ARD. However, by the 1999 Constitution, there is the freedom of association, and you can join. But if they call for a strike, don’t join them because your programme is structured and uninterrupted in each of the postings. The moment you interrupt, you will start all over at no cost to the government. That is the implication.
“Again, during the strike, the accident and emergency (unit) must be manned with a duty roster so that any patient in need of your services can be given first aid and asked to go and sort themselves out somewhere else. It is not for you to entirely close down the health facility to the public.”
Dr. Ngozi Azodo, the director of planning, research, and statistics for the ministry, spoke on behalf of the minister of health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire, who bemoaned the mass exodus of physicians and encouraged the newly enrolled physicians to treat patients with compassion.
“When people come to you in their most vulnerable state, they know you can help them. Don’t exploit them. Commit today to help your patient, society, and community to the best of your ability for the benefit of humanity. Doctors must care for themselves because if not, they will not be able to care for the rest of humanity.”