Daud Olatunji, Abeokuta
Ogun State Governor, Dapo Abiodun, has said that the state needs additional 150 doctors in the junior cadre to reduce the acute shortage of manpower in the state-owned hospitals.
The governor disclosed this while speaking with journalists during the National Physicians’ Week of the Nigerian Medical Association in Abeokuta, the state capital.
Abiodun said he had given approval to all state-owned hospitals to commence the recruitment of 20 consultant doctors as a way of addressing manpower shortage.
The governor, who spoke through the Secretary to the State Government, Mr Tokunbo Talabi, said the recruitment was necessary to reduce the shortage of manpower and also boost health care delivery in the state.
Abiodun added that he had also approved the regularisation of payment of appropriate remuneration for all doctors working in state-owned hospitals.
He disclosed that the state would commence the implementation of the appropriate remuneration to state doctors by the end of October.
The governor said, “Every reasonable and responsive government must ensure an enduring policy on health because of its direct link to the sustenance of the economy.
“What has been requested now is that we still have 150 health workers at that level to be taken care of.”
The state NMA had in September threatened to embark on strike following what it called inappropriate remuneration and short-changing of the medical doctors in the employ of the state.
Speaking with journalists at the event, the state NMA Chairman, Dr Oladayo Ogunlaja, said a Memorandum of Understanding with the government over the agitation for regularisation of pay and other improved welfare demands was not implemented.
He said the doctors awaited the implementation effective this month-end.
Ogunlaja said, “The government has graciously approved the appropriate remuneration for all doctors working with the Ogun State Government.
“That means what the Federal Government pays its doctors at FMC and other teaching hospitals is the same salary the Ogun State government has promised to pay now.”