Medical experts have decried the high rate of personnel decline in the health sector as a result of migration to other countries or sectors of the economy.
They stated this during a four-day Medical and Dental Consultants’ Association of Nigeria (MDCAN) National Executive Council (NEC) meeting in Jos, the Plateau State capital.
The National President of MDCAN, Professor Kenneth Ozoilo, said the COVID-19 pandemic has laid bare the gaping deficiencies in the health sector, resulting from years of neglect and chronic underfunding.
He said the country has continued to lose highly skilled manpower, both young and old, at an alarming rate and with little or no mitigating effort from the government.
A medical expert and consultant, Professor Nuhu K. Dakum, said some years ago, Nigerians had about 85,000 registered doctors working in the country but that it now has only about 45,000 or less.
“Most of the doctors trained in the country have left. And with the COVID-19 outbreak, most countries require more doctors, nurses and other health workers to work for them.
“So, many doctors are now taking exams to leave this country and in the next few months or so, a huge number of doctors are going to leave this country,” he said.
As a result, according to him, the nation has only very few doctors who cannot give the needed and adequate health care services.