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Health care services improving in Nigeria, nurses say

By Wole Oyebade   |   16 December 2009   |   10:00 pm  

APPARENTLY worried about the incessant flight overseas by Nigerian politicians for medical treatment, nurses in the country have bemoaned the poor perception about the worth of Nigerian hospitals and the ability of its personnel.

The nurses, under the aegis of Association of Senior Nurse Administrators (ASNA), Lagos State Chapter, said many are still unaware of the tremendous changes that Nigerian hospitals had witness lately even as its medical personnel are at par with their colleagues in other countries.

During the association’s breast and cervical cancer sensitisation walk within the axis of Lagos Island Metropolis on Tuesday, as part of ASNA’s 30th anniversary ceremony, the Head of Nursing, Lagos State Health Service Commission, Mrs. Victoria Oloruntegbe, said: “It is because they do not know the asset they have in Nigerian medical services. Many are still carrying about past impression about our abilities, but if only they can take there time and just appreciate the health services as of now.

“As regards Lagos State Government hospitals, there are tremendous changes in terms of facilities and manpower. What the government is doing right now is to ensure that health personnel are well trained.”

Oloruntegbe added that the Lagos State Government had vested the power to employ more nurses, to cushion the dearth of nursing hands currently experienced in some government hospitals. “Normal international standard is supposed to be ratio one nurse to four patients, one to eight at most. In comparison to what we are presently experiencing, the Lagos State Government has been very dynamic at solving the problem. We now have the authority to employ more hands. But we cannot just employ everyone that comes our way, as we have standard to maintain, and ensure that we do not create more problem than we hope to solve,” she said.

The Apex Chief Matron of General Hospital Lagos, Mrs. Clementina Taiwo added that all that the system needs is modern equipment, as the nation already has health care personnel that are at par with their counterparts in other countries.

She said: “If only they can effectively equip our hospitals with the state-of-the-art facilities, then our hospitals would successfully compete with foreign hospitals. The personnel here are at par with their contemporaries. All what we need are just equipment, capacity building programmes, and we would surely render the care they are looking for overseas. We are up to the task in delivering best health services,” Taiwo said.



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