Isaac Adewole, minister of health, has directed medical doctors to treat emergencies, including gunshot injuries, without requesting for police clearance or other restraints.
The death of patients from gun wounds is usually blamed on the delay of hospital in offering them treatment until a clearance from the police has been provided.
But speaking at the swearing-in ceremony of 342 foreign-trained medical doctors and six dentistry graduates in Abuja, Adewole said the time has come for doctors to start acting otherwise.
The foreign graduates were successful in the medical and dental council of Nigeria (MDCN) assessment held from April 6 to 8, which enables them to practise in the country.
Adewole also urged them to treat patients on emergency before asking for money, saying life is more precious than money.
He further advised them to continue practising within the limits of their competence, and imbibe global best practices to better their lots in the profession.
“Hospitals are sanctuary for the sick and injured; never must our hospitals be closed for whatever reasons. Even in war situations, hospitals must remain open,” he said.
“Doctors must show no restraint in treating emergencies, even with gun-shot wounds you must treat them. Thereafter, [you may] raise questions.
“You must also treat emergencies before asking for money because life is more precious than money.”
Adewole acknowledged challenges in the profession, such as inadequate opportunities for internship programmes, but he assured the doctors of government commitment to funding the programme.
The ministry said that the nation was in dire need of more human resources to cater to the health needs of the increasing population.
He promised that government would collaborate with key stakeholders to ensure effective distribution and financing of the training programme.
“The federal ministry of health has strategically identified and mapped out a number of key activities to ensure that Nigeria reverses the ills and failures in the healthcare system,” he said.
“Training of prospective and qualified healthcare professionals is one of the key agenda of the present administration.
“On receiving your registration certificates and licences, you will proceed to your internship training at any of the MDCN accredited centres.
“We are not unaware of some of the challenges some young doctors experienced in securing placement for internship. We are working assiduously to ensure that doctors eligible for internship training will no longer wait endlessly searching for centres where they would enroll for their training.
“With over hundred MDCN accredited internship centres among others, the ministry will work with key stakeholders to ensure effective distribution and financing of the training programme within the country.
“This will ensure that the perennial difficulties in securing internship programmes by the resident doctors will become history.”
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