Africa requires prudent management to improve healthcare – Expert
Healthcare practitioners have been charged to exhibit managerial skills to be able to face daunting challenges confronting healthcare system in sub-Saharan Africa.
Making this call during the opening ceremony of a weeklong Residence Training Programme for Health Leaders and Managers in West Africa organised by the Lagos Business School (LBS), in collaboration with the Management Development Institute (MDI), Professor of Strategic Management at LBS, Chris Ogbechie, urged them to implement and improve national healthcare priorities and systems.
In his opening remarks, Ogbechie said Africans have several issues with their health system. He noted that brain drain, poor health facilities, Africans seeing health as a social intervention which should be free, are some of the challenges confronting Africa, hence the need for the training by experts.
He said: “Doctors are not good managers of resources but they can learn from managers. With prudent management, we can improve healthcare in Africa.”
According to him, if a small fraction of what Africans spend on medical tourism are spent on health system, it will change the narrative of health system in the continent.
Also speaking, the Dean, Lagos Business School, Dr. Enase Okonedo, said: “The primary goal of the MDI programme is to assist African ministries of health in implementing their peculiar national health priorities and improving the effectiveness of their health systems by enhancing the leadership and management skills and practices of program managers and leaders of organisations that are devoted to delivering healthcare services to underserved populations.”
In her presentation, the President of the Healthcare Federation of Nigeria (HFN), Mrs. Clare Omatseye, lamented the enormous challenges of health system in Africa adding that with concerted efforts between private and public sectors, the story could be changed hence the need for a managerial training like this.
She further stated that enabling health policy enactment, leveraging on innovations and tackling access to finances could as well change the narrative in Africa.
The Management Development Institute programme is administered by the Global Business School Network and funded by Johnson and Johnson.
Participants are expected to gain access to management tools, frameworks and knowledge that will enable them to increase the quantity and quality of health services they provide along with improved access to them.