85% doctors planning to leave Nigeria for greener pastures – NARD
At least 85 per cent of Nigerian doctors are planning to leave the country to seek greener pastures, Sunday PUNCH has learnt.
This is according to the data obtained from the Nigerian Association of Resident Doctors.
The report also showed that the preferred countries for immigration intentions are the United Kingdom and the United States of America.
The NARD members are of House Officers, Registrars, Senior Registrars, and Medical Officers below the level of Principal Medical Officers.
Speaking with our correspondent, the President of the association, Dr Emeka, said if the government did not take steps to address the ongoing brain drain in the country, the situation will get worse in the health sector.
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“When we are saying these things, it looks as if it’s a joke. Mobility of labour is acceptable anywhere and what the government should do is to address the root causes of the immigration of doctors, as long as they don’t address it, when they see better opportunities out there, they will want to go there.
“It’s about the choices people make about themselves when they think that the government is not taking care of them. The government needs to improve on the things we have highlighted to reduce the brain drain,” he said.
He noted that as of October 2022, there were only 10,000 resident doctors in the country.
“Five months after, and we don’t have any reason to suggest that there is a downward scale of doctors migrating, if anything should be, it should be an increment in the immigration because nothing essentially has changed in terms of the working condition, infrastructure, security and all that,” he added.
Going by this figure, it means that 8,500 resident doctors plan to leave the country.
The 2023 macroeconomic outlook report released by the Nigerian Economic Summit Group recently said that aside from the considerable health infrastructural gap, Nigeria has lost many medical professionals to brain drain, leading to personnel inadequacy in the health sector.
The report said, “One of the major factors inhibiting Nigeria’s economic development has been the brain drain and knowledge gap in human capital. Knowledge as a significant driver of economies of scale can be increased by investing in education and providing better health services, which is the nation’s human capital formation.
“An equipped labour force, a stable economic environment, a thriving private sector, and robust social welfare programmes are crucial in attaining Shared Prosperity in Nigeria.”
Lifestyle changes that can lower your blood pressure
Hypertension is a medical condition that is associated with ageing, and which affects both men and women, once they reach 50 years or about that age. It has been established that a person could develop hypertension at a younger age. Nonetheless, when discovered early and properly managed medically, a person with hypertension can still live a fully functional prolonged life, without developing other health complications or even delaying their onset. Below are tips for lowering blood pressure.
Make small changes
If you have high blood pressure, there’s plenty you can do every day to control it. Eating healthier, exercising more, and tweaking other day-to-day habits can help keep your readings in check. That might keep you from needing medication to keep your numbers where they should be.
Eat a healthy diet
You can lower your blood pressure by eating lots of whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and low-fat dairy. Look for foods that don’t have much fat or cholesterol. This approach has a name: the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet. It includes lean meats, poultry, fish, and nuts. It’s also high in protein and fibre and avoids sugary drinks, red meats, and sweets.
Lose extra weight
Shedding even a few extra kilograms can lower your blood pressure. It’s also important to watch your waist. Too much bulk around your midsection can affect your BP. For women, a waist of more than 35 inches is high. For men, it’s more than 40 inches.
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Exercise can help you lower your blood pressure and lose weight. Aim to get at least 150 minutes of physical activity each week. Look for aerobic workouts that make your lungs and heart work a little harder. Try things like brisk walking, biking, swimming, or dancing. Even chores like raking leaves or washing windows count.
Watch your salt
Too much sodium can raise your blood pressure. You should aim for no more than 1,500 milligrams a day. You don’t get sodium just from the salt you sprinkle in foods. It can also hide in packaged foods. Read labels before you buy. Salt can lurk in things like soups, sandwiches, and pizza.
Get more potassium
Your blood pressure is likely to be higher if you don’t get enough of this nutrient. Shoot for between 3,000 and 3,500 milligrams each day. How much is that? A medium banana has about 420 milligrams. A baked potato with the skin gives you more than 900 milligrams. Spinach, beans, tomatoes, oranges, yoghurt, and sweet potatoes are also high in potassium. Some people with medical issues like kidney disease or who take certain medicines may have to be careful with potassium. So check with your doctor before changing what you eat.
Stop sale, use of defective tetracycline ointment, NAFDAC warns
The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has alerted members of the public to the presence of defective tetracycline hydrochloride ophthalmic ointment in the market.
It therefore in possession of the defective ointment to discard it immediately.
This is contained in a notice signed by the Director-General of the agency, Prof. Mojisola Adeyeye, issued on Tuesday in Abuja.
She said the World Health Organisation (WHO) had raised an alarm on batches of the tetracycline hydrochloride ophthalmic ointment USP one per cent for various quality issues.
She added that the affected ointment, manufactured by Navi Mumbai-based Galentic Pharma (India) Pvt Ltd, was still within valid shelf life.
She quoted the WHO as saying, “At least 55 countries received the affected batches, and the manufacturer has initiated a voluntary recall for several batches.
“The WHO also stated that the manufacturer had indicated that other batches may be included in the voluntary recall.”
She also said, “Five international procurers of the product independently conducted a visual examination of random samples of stock on hand and detected a range of quality issues.
“The issues reported by each procurer were not uniform and varied from batch to batch. Some of such issues include the presence of particles, ranging in colour, size and shape on the nozzle in the cap and in the ointment inside each tube.
“Others are black spots and brown splotches on the inner foil layer of the tube, and phase separation.
“Tetracycline Hydrochloride Ophthalmic Ointment USP one per is indicated for use in bacterial blepharitis (red, swollen, irritated, and itchy eyelids), bacterial conjunctivitis (eye discharge, redness and itching), bacterial keratitis (inflammation of the cornea), and trachoma caused by Chlamydia trachomatis.
“The product is given as treatment for infants and older children and also indicated as a preventive measure for infants, including neonates.”
She also urged anyone who suffered any adverse reaction to seek prompt medical advice.
South Africa detects two imported cholera cases
South Africa has called for vigilance on the part of the country’s citizens after health authorities confirmed two imported cases of cholera.
The South African Ministry of Health, Joe Phaahla, explained that the two cases are sisters who had traveled to Malawi to attend a funeral. In addition, several family members are reported to have symptoms compatible with the disease and are being investigated in laboratories.
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On the other hand, the Health Minister recalled that cholera is not an endemic disease in the country, informing that the last outbreak, imported from Zimbabwe, took place in 2008-2009, when the country recorded 12,000 cases.
Malawi is facing a cholera outbreak declared in March last year that has left more than 1,200 dead in the country, according to the most recent data from the Ministry of Health. The Malawian Executive has imposed and lifted several measures over the past few months, including the closure of schools in some of the country’s cities.
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