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College recommends establishment of Health Services Development Bank

Nigerian Surgeons at work

Nigerian Surgeons at work

By Felicia Imohimi

The International College of Surgeons (ICS) has called for the establishment of a Health Services Development Bank with single digit interest rate as applicable in agriculture sector and industrial development.

This is contained in a communiqué issued at the end of the ICS Annual General Meeting (AGM), the Nigerian Section and Scientific Conference on Monday in Abuja.

The communiqué was signed by Dr Maurice Ezeoke, President ICS Nigerian Section and Prof. Lucky Onotai, Secretary-General, both fellows of ICS.

The communiqué said that such measure would enable easy access and affordable capital for investors utilising the model.

It observed that medical brain drain of the country had reached alarming proportions and urged the government to take urgent steps to stem the tide.

It further frowned at the alarming security situation in the country, which was impacting negatively on the health status of Nigerians.

The body, therefore, appealed to the government to act decisively to mitigate the situation.

“Brain drain and alarming security situation in the country have impacted grossly and negatively on the health of Nigerians.

“This health issues seem at the moment to be catered for by the private sector and free medical outreaches as conducted by ICS.

“The ICS-NS therefore recommends that the Public Private Partnership (PPP) model of growing health services seems to be the best approach and therefore should be encouraged and strengthened,’’ it noted.

The communiqué recommended a favourable and conducive environment for retention of home base medical expertise and frequent visits or complete return of those in the diaspora.

It further urged the government to establish medical cities for ease of acquisition of land by investors in the medical field.

“Government should also be involved in sponsoring, training and development of medical expertise for the nation, which at the moment seems to be left in the hands of individuals and the private sector.

“To achieve this training and development of expertise, budgetary allocations for health needs to be significantly improved with a view to ultimately reaching the WHO recommended percentage of national budgets,’’ it said.

The communiqué appreciated the efforts of various governments towards enhancing the health of Nigerians through the recently gazetted National Health Insurance Act 2022.

The communiqué assured of the readiness of the college to support all policies and measures by government aimed at improving the health of the populace. (NAN)(

Edited by Fatima Sule/Grace Yussuf