Medical doctors in Osun State have appealed to the state governor, Mr. Rauf Aregbesola to fund the health sector in the state adequately for the good and benefit of the people of the state.
The doctors made the appeal in a press release issued by the Medical and Dental Consultants Association of Nigeria (MDCAN), LAUTECH Teaching Hospital, Chapter, Osogbo, Osun State at the weekend.
The press statement signed by the MDCAN Chairman, Dr Olusegun Adebami and Secretary General, Dr Idowu Adewale Ajayi expressed worry over the current challenges facing the health sector in the state and the unpaid outstanding fractionated salary arrears.
MDCAN commended the Aregbesola for the infrastructural growth and transformations being witnessed in some sectors. The doctor, however, lamented that the health sector which is key to human development has not been prioritized.
According to the statement, “LAUTECH Teaching Hospital, Osogbo is bedevilled by a myriad of challenges as a result of inadequate capital funding, poor infrastructure and poor pay of healthcare personnel.”
“The net effect is inadequate medical supplies, drugs, equipment, and personnel. The problems of the State's health sector are numerous and require collective effort from every one of us, creative planning, focused management and judicious application of resources on the part of the Government of the State of Osun.”
“It is unfortunate that there remains the lingering issue of continuous poor pay to doctors who work tirelessly to ensure that Osun citizenry achieve and maintain optimal health at all times to enable them contribute meaningfully to the development of the state.”
“It is important to note that our members have continued to receive less than a third of our salaries as prescribed by the National Salaries and Wages Commission since July 2015 and this unwholesome circumstance resulted from the payment of less than 50% of an obsolete salary scale, unbearable taxation on the tiny proportion of salaries and non-payment of the existing circulars on the Revised Consolidated Medical Salary Scale (Revised CONMESS) by the state government despite the enthusiasm of our members.”
“It is our expectation that Government will pay all our outstanding arrears, improve on capital spending for massive infrastructural development in the health sector, provide funds for purchase of medical supplies, equipment and drug.”
MDCAN said the directive of President Muhamadu Buhari that another huge tranche of the Paris Club loan refunds be disbursed to State Governments has raised the hope of the doctors and appealed to Aregbesola to give priority to health sector once he get the money.
“We believe that appropriate response from Government will eventually result in effective service delivery, efficient manpower training and quality scientific research that can bring a lot of transformation in the health sector and propel LAUTECH Teaching Hospital, Osogbo in the direction of excellence that it desires and deserves.”
“It is important to maintain the present relative industrial peace in the hospital in the interest of everyone; especially the poor income earners of our society who cannot afford to seek medical care outside our state, let alone travel abroad.”
“To sustain the current calm, the Government must do the needful by paying the outstanding salary arrears of our members, review the current obnoxious taxation, commence payment of full salary (Revised CONMESS), and improve on the funding of the hospital. We sincerely hope that this subject matter will be treated with all the importance it deserves”, MDCAN said.