Salma Anas, the Special Adviser on Public Health Matters to President Bola Tinubu, expressed the President’s concern over the departure of health workers seeking opportunities abroad. This concern was highlighted during the 2023 annual conference of the Association of Medical Laboratory Scientists in Abuja, themed ‘Universal health coverage: The medical laboratories priority in Nigeria.‘
Anas conveyed Tinubu’s worry regarding the ‘japa syndrome,’ an exodus of health professionals seeking better prospects overseas, which she attributed to past administrations.
“We are committed to reversing this trend and ensuring the retention of our medical experts within the country through various interventions and measures,” Anas stated.
Part of the government’s strategy involves motivating health workers within Nigeria, not just through regular payment of salaries and allowances but also by creating conducive working environments. Anas emphasized the provision of modern medical facilities, particularly at the primary healthcare level, as a priority.
She highlighted the government’s dedication to producing more health workers across all fields to address shortages within the sector.
National President of the Association of Medical Laboratory of Nigeria, Bassey Bassey, elaborated on the efforts made to combat quackery in the health sector. He emphasized that the association, in collaboration with partners, had taken steps to shut down unregistered laboratories, aiming to curb incorrect diagnoses and illegal activities in the country.