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NMA Advocates for Scrutiny of Medical Education in Ukraine and Upholding Quality Standards

The Nigeria Medical Association (NMA) has called for a thorough investigation into the quality of medical education provided to Nigerian students studying medicine abroad, particularly in Ukraine. Dr. Uche Rowland Ojinmah, the NMA National President, issued this plea during a press conference held in Umuahia to commemorate the 2023 Physicians’ Week. He emphasized the importance of maintaining rigorous standards for licencing foreign-trained doctors.

Dr. Ojinmah warned against any attempts to lower these standards, asserting that permitting inadequately trained graduates to practise medicine in Nigeria would exacerbate the challenges within the healthcare system. The NMA firmly denounced any endeavours to interfere with the regulation of medical education and standards, particularly concerning the licencing of foreign-trained medical graduates.

The NMA reviewed the examination processes and content governing these graduates and emphasized that individuals who fail these exams should seek assistance and not resort to manipulative tactics. The NMA expressed its support for the Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria (MDCN) and urged the registrar to stand resolute against any intimidation.

Dr. Ojinmah echoed the Physicians’ Pledge, pledging to “defend the honour and noble traditions of medicine.” He questioned why the medical profession is uniquely targeted by these pressures, while other disciplines, such as engineering or law, are not similarly scrutinized. The NMA firmly opposes any concessions that would permit unqualified medical and dental graduates to practise in Nigeria.

The NMA also voiced its objections to the proposal by the Federal Government to cease funding the MDCN in the coming year. Dr. Ojinmah characterized this plan as ill-conceived and likely to lead to detrimental consequences. The regulation of medical and dental practise, a core function of the MDCN, is of such paramount importance that government funding is deemed appropriate. Dr. Ojinmah cautioned that if the government ceases to fund the MDCN, the profession may be compelled to assume the financial burden, potentially influencing its regulatory authority.

Demands for Timely Salary Improvements and Kidnap Concerns

The NMA expressed dissatisfaction with the sluggish progress in implementing slightly improved salary structures (CONMESS and CONHESS) for its members and demanded immediate action to commence payment, along with the accompanying arrears. They urged the government to prioritise the accoutrement allowance for medical doctors and dentists.

The rising frequency of kidnappings targeting doctors was another pressing concern for the NMA. They called upon the Abia and Cross Rivers State Governments to secure the release of abducted members still in captivity, urging for tangible actions rather than mere rhetoric.

Expanding Medical Education and Protecting Clinical Service Personnel

To address the escalating demand for medical education, the NMA called for the establishment of more University of Medicine institutions to accommodate the growing number of students aspiring to study medicine and surgery in Nigeria’s universities.

The NMA also advised the Abia State Government against any plan to retire Medical Doctors in directorate cadre positions in clinical service, emphasizing that the policy, which recommends compulsory retirement after eight years as Directors, does not apply to medical doctors in clinical service. They recommended redeploying medical directors in the ministries, who were affected by the policy but have not yet reached retirement age, to hospitals instead.

In conclusion, the NMA reasserted its unwavering commitment to upholding the quality of medical education and practise in Nigeria, protecting the welfare of its members, and advocating for the nation’s healthcare needs.

Learn more:

  1. NMA calls for investigation of quality of medical education …
  2. NMA warns against politicising medical training – Tribune Online
  3. NMA Calls for Investigation Into Ukraine’s Medical Education Quality | 9jalinks
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