Don’t sack NYSC doctors, house officers, Medical Guild tells Lagos govt

Lara Adejoro

The Medical Guild has urged the Lagos State Government not to remove medical doctors undertaking housemanship and National Youth Service Corps doctors from the state scheme of service.

The Medical Guild is the association of medical doctors under the employment of the Lagos state government.

Chairman of the Medical Guild, Dr. Oluwajimi Sodipo made the call at a press conference on Sunday in Lagos.

Sodipo said that the decision to remove the doctors was contained in a circular from the office of the state Head of Service dated July 12 and titled ‘Internship Programme in Public/Civil Service.’

According to him, the content of the circular is at variance with any known international best practice and will cause further uncertainty in the health sector.

“This circular has further heightened the uncertainty among young doctors and we have received countless complaints from them on this issue,” he said.

He noted that the decision would further worsen the brain drain and manpower challenge confronting the state and country, adding that it was becoming difficult to attract medical graduates to residency training. 

“At this point, we are combating the third wave of COVID-19, emerging medical challenges, monkeypox, cholera, communicable and non-communicable disease in the state.

“All policies should be to attract and encourage, particularly our young doctors,” he said. 

Sodipo said that the circular should be immediately withdrawn to allow for proper consultation, as it was yet to be implemented at the Federal or other states. 

He urged the state to uphold the commitment by the state Commissioner of Health and its counterpart in Establishment, Training and Pension that the circular would not affect the wages of medical doctors working as House Officers and NYSC doctors. 

Sodipo also appealed that the challenge of unresolved salary disparity between doctors working for the state government and their counterparts should be urgently resolved. 

He added that the disparity was contributing to attrition of doctors from the state service. 

Sodipo stressed that the Guild was duty-bound to protect the medical profession as enshrined in the Physician’s Oath and welfare of its members.

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