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Nigeria has one doctor to 2,753 persons, says FG

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The Federal Government yesterday said that the country had a population ratio of one doctor per 2,753 persons, which is far above the World Health Organisation’s recommendation of one doctor to 600.

According to the government, Nigeria has 74,543 registered medical doctors with the Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria (MDCN) and this equates 36.3 medical doctors per 100,000 per population (doctor to population ratio of 1:2753).

Head, Human Resource for Health in the Federal Ministry of Health, Shakuri Kadiri, who disclosed this at the launch of the 2018 National Health Workforce Profile and the handover of the National Health Workforce Registry by the WHO yesterday in Abuja, said that the number of medical doctors who migrated to Europe and America for greener pastures rose from 656 in 2014 to 1,551 in 2018.

Kadiri stated that the country recorded a progressive increase in migration of medical doctors from 2005 to 2018, adding that 59 per cent of the registered medical practitioners were in good standing with 35 per cent being females.

He said that the health sector recorded an increase in the stock of its professionally-regulated health workers in 2018, stressing that density of medical doctors by state of practice are not exhaustive as there is a strong possibility that many practicing doctors without practicing licence may have been excluded.

He noted that the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) had the highest density of 82 medical doctors per 100,000 population in 2012 whereas that of Katsina reduced from 2.5 per 100,000 population in 2012 to 2.0 per 100,000 and Zamfara increased marginally from 2.5 per 100,000 population to 2.7 per 100,000 population.

Also speaking, WHO Officer-In-Charge, Peter Clement Lasuba, noted that Nigeria could only improve its health indices by ensuring that the health workforce is accessible, qualified, well-trained, motivated, skilled and equitably distributed.


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Shakuri Kadiri
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