The Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) says it is actively involved in ensuring that removal of House Officers and NYSC doctors from scheme of service does not lead to crisis in Lagos State health sector.
Dr Adetunji Adenekan, NMA Chairman, Lagos Zone, gave the assurance at a media briefing on Monday in Lagos.
Adenekan said that NMA through the Medical Guild, had been liaising with the state government on withdrawing the crisis-prone circular released by the state Head of Service.
He said that the National Council on Establishment (NCE) released a policy document for the removal of House Officers and NYSC doctors from the scheme of service, labelling them as students.
“It is important to clarify that medical/dental interns are graduates and very essential frontlines that render indispensable services in Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria (MDCN) approved hospitals, albeit under supervision.
“Also, NYSC doctors are full-fledged medical/dental practitioners and fully registered by MDCN,” he said.
According to him, there is a scheduled tripartite meeting involving Head of Service of the Federation, National NMA and MDCN, aimed at resolving irregularities in the circular.
“Unfortunately, only Lagos State Government hastily commenced its implementation out of all the 36 states and FCT, even the Federal Government is yet to.
“The NMA Lagos condemns, in totality, the hasty posture of the Lagos State Government toward the implementation of the circular as this may only culminate in crisis,” he said.
Adenekan appealed to the state government to withdraw the circular to further strengthen the current harmonious relationship between the association and the state.
He said it was obvious that huge gap exist in the understanding of medicolegal aspect of medical practice across board, in spite of all efforts to ensure justice and fairness for all parties when necessary.
The NMA chairman said that the association’s Annual General Meeting and Scientific Conference would provide the platform to address the issue.
Adenekan said that the event with the theme, “Medical Practice and The Law: Emerging Challenges for the Nigerian Doctors” which started on Aug. 1 would end on Aug. 6.
He said that the theme could not have come at a better time when almost all unfavourable outcomes of medical care were seen as consequence of medical and dental practitioners negligence.
Adenekan said that the event would afford all stakeholders the opportunity to appraise the development in crucial area.
According to him, it will provide worthwhile recommendations and guarantee desirable understanding of laws guiding medicine practice in the country.