The National President of the Association of General And Private Medical Practitioners Of Nigeria , Ambassador Dr. Ugwu Iyke Odo has advocated for the inclusion of Medical Entrepreneurship into the curriculum of medical education to support both competence and capacity in personnel and facility management, financial intelligence and business development.
He made this call at the induction and swearing in ceremony of 2021 Batch A the graduating Medical Students of the College of Medicine, University of Nigeria, which took place on the 28th of April, 2021 at the Uncoma Conference Hall (UNTH), Ituku-Ozalla, Enugu State.
Dr Odo lamented that Nigeria has emptied her best brain in Medicine into UK, America and Canada as a result of the deplorable state of our healthcare system.
In his words, the Nigerian Healthcare System has been described as a very weak system and this is what it is. The system is neglected and run down with poor funding, poor infrastructure, poor corporate governance , poor Management , lack of commitment, a very weak health Insurance scheme, insincerity, corruption and lack of political will.
He told the graduating students; ” you have trained under harsh conditions, practicing doctors are operating in facilities without the requisite infrastructure and material needs for global best practice.
They also work under tense, unfriendly and often hazardous and unsafe conditions with poor earnings both in private and in public institutions.
He described the situation as daring and desperate.
The AGPMPN President, however stated that the solution is not for all doctors to run away from the country. He therefore advocated for medical entrepreneurship training to stem the tide.
Dr Odo said; every doctor seems to have lost faith in Nigeria but not many have taken time to interrogate the situation. They would have known that expatriate doctors are flocking into Nigeria.”.
He stated that some of the best hospitals in Nigeria are owned by foreigners; Indians, Turks and Lebanese. He also noted that the biggest and most advanced and most distributed medical diagnostic company in Nigeria today is MECURE, owned by Indians.
Dr Odo disclosed that the largest pharmaceutical networks in Nigeria, the Chanrai group is an Indian Company.
He, therefore, stated that the significance of these is that there is something we do not understand about our country that foreign doctors understand.
His words; ” there is something they are seeing but we are not seeing. The other significance is that the grass is not always greener on the other side.
” The yet another significance is that there are potentials in Nigeria but rather than see oppurtunities, many Nigerians are seeing problems.
“The foreigners who are investing here are certainly seeing oppurtunities beyond the problems. Oppurtunities and problems always coexist but what do we see when we look”, he added.
He noted that there are beggars on the streets of New York. There are thieves on Oxford Street, in London.
The Medical Director of Meridian Hospitals, Port-Harcourt stated that the Nigerian Health Sector is a massive investment hub waiting to be harnessed and he therefore advised the graduating students and eminent doctors gathered that a doctor must have investment mentality.
” He must have financial intelligence and must have a strong personal survival instinct”.
He advocated that doctors should not only conquer their primary domain of medicine but venture into other callings including business, investment, local and international politics.
” The only way we can protect our interest in the system is for more doctors to take interest in politics and to seek for greater financial empowerment”, he enthused.
Dr Odo promised to institute a Chair for Medical Entrepreneurship at the College of Medicine of the University of Nigeria, if medical entrepreneurship is introduced into the curriculum of medical education in Nigeria.
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