The Medical Guild has raised concerns over the disturbing deaths of their colleagues in Lagos State recently.
Speaking during a press conference in Lagos on Sunday, the Chairman of the Guild, Dr Sa’eid Ahmad, observed that at least fifteen doctors have died in the state in the last six months.
Naija News reports that Ahmad disclosed this while speaking on the guild’s forthcoming Annual General Meeting and Scientific Conference.
In his address, he appealed to the Lagos State Government to prioritise the health and lives of healthcare workers.
Ahmad observed that the guild had faced significant difficulties in the past year, primarily due to the persistent co-morbidities that were worsened by the loss of manpower and the resulting excessive workload on service point members. He said the guild had also experienced the unfortunate loss of several of its members.
“The intensity of the attendant sense of loss was probably brought to its peak with the tragic event of the collapsed elevator in the General Hospital, Odan, Lagos, which claimed the life of our young colleague, the Late Dr. Vwaere Diaso.
“This was to be followed by end-on-end demises of some additional colleagues, sometimes multiple over a few days,” Ahmad said.
According to him, the disturbing events serve as an inescapable wake-up call to intensify vigilance towards self-care and deepen the level of engagement with the government to prioritise the health and lives of healthcare workers in the state.
“These, after all, are the people in whose hands the health and lives of the people are entrusted,” Ahmad noted that the guild, through a series of emergency General Assemblies and consultations, developed a comprehensive position paper.
He said the paper drew the attention of the state government to urgently take action to salvage the spiralling health of the health workers.
Ahmad said that the document identified the roots of the welfare problems culminating in massive exodus and offered practical and workable solutions.
“We had demanded short, medium and long-term solution categories to these problems, including the basic need for healthcare workers to be able to obtain much-needed care themselves within the system in which they work.
“This document has indeed formed the cornerstone of highest level policy discussions with the Government of Lagos State on behalf of our members.
“We hope that these discussions produce policy pronouncements and actionable directives at any moment,” the PUNCH quoted Ahmad saying.
He revealed that the guild, through its Office of Social Welfare, allocated a total of N21.5 million to promptly assist sick members and provide support to the families of deceased members during times of loss.
The Chairman expressed that the guild has initiated housing mortgage and automobile facilities to ensure that members have suitable accommodation and convenient transportation for their daily commute to work.
Ahmad praised the government for successfully resolving all issues related to the stagnation and demotion of In-service trained specialists, as well as implementing the necessary financial measures since August 2023.
Ahmad emphasized that by tapping into the intellectual resources provided by health policymakers and other stakeholders, significant benefits can be achieved.
He stated that this approach will greatly contribute to the development of appropriate policy formulation and implementation strategies, ultimately leading to the preservation of lives and the enhancement of overall well-being for the people.