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AGPMPN seeks investment, collaboration with Government

Some members of AGPMPN

The association of general and private medical practitioners of Nigeria (AGPMPN) joined the rest of the world on Saturday, May 19 to mark The Family Doctors Day 2018 with a call on governments at all levels to collaborate with the private sector in order to achieve universal health coverage in the country.

This, according to the association, has become necessary since a deliberate investment and growth of the private sector in health through policy shifts and system restructuring could reverse the trend of medical tourism which has not only helped to cripple the Nigerian economy but has also brought the country to ridicule in the world community.

The Family Doctors Day marked globally on May 19 has been set aside by the World Organization of Family Doctors (WONCA) since 2010.

In his goodwill message, read by the Lagos AGPMPN Chairman, Dr. Tunji Akintade, the AGPMPN president, Dr Iyke Odo noted that WONCA, as an organization, oversees the activities of family doctors across the globe and has worked tremendously hard to continuously maintain human capacity development and life saving programme at international, regional and rural levels.

As a major player in the activities of WONCA, Dr Odo pointed that Nigeria is challenged to meet and sustain the milestone standards WONCA is advocating across the world.

“Accordingly, I use the atmosphere provided by this year’s anniversary to commend our governments at federal, state and local levels for the much they have done in articulating a health system for Nigeria.

“I must however quickly add that so much still beckon on us to be done. Our healthcare institutions are still very weak, liable and unsustained. Simply, we are not proud of the performance of our health sector.

He advised that the country must budget more for health.

“At least 17% of the annual budget is expected in health but we get less than 5%.

“We must deliberately invest in and grow our private sector in health by policy shifts and system restructuring that is investment friendly, and that reverses the medical tourism destination which has not only helped to cripple our economy but has brought us to the seat of ridicule in the world community.”

Past president of AGPMPN, Dr Anthony Omolola, said instead of government building more primary healthcare centers, “We, as family physicians in the private health sector believe sincerely that it is a wrong approach to our health challenges because we have a lot of family physicians and generalists all over Nigeria that can be used as gateway to healthcare delivery.

Currently they are underutilized, they can be properly utilized and apply to our healthcare system.”

Also speaking, the past President World Organization of Family Doctors (Africa) Dr Sylvester Osinowo, said it is inalienable
right of every citizen to access health irrespective of economic status, gender or culture. He therefore calls for a
structured way of funding health to ensure that everybody has access to health.

The climax of the event was when the team of the doctors took to the streets of Lagos to provide free medical care to citizens.

AGPMPN  members offering free medical service to members of the public

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