The Chief Medical Director (CMD), University College Hospital (UCH), Ibadan, Prof. Jesse Otegbayo, has bemoaned the increasing rate of resignation of health workers, warning that Nigeria will feel the heat in five years’ time if an urgent action is not taken to stop the trend.
Otegbayo stated this while addressing reporters at the hospital on the occasion of UCH’s 65th anniversary, on Monday.
The CMD revealed that he received 60 resignations every month on the average as health workers seek greener pasture abroad.
He explained that the high rate of resignation was already taking its toll on the hospital, disclosing that 661 clinical staff resigned between 2020 and October 15, 2022.
He listed the clinical staff as mainly nurses, doctors and pharmacists, adding that the head of the Department of Anaesthesia recently wrote to the management that the department would no longer be able to cover the Accident and Emergency unit due to staff shortage.
“Every week, I receive about 15 resignation letters; there are more nurses than doctors and pharmacists.
“The movement of health workers will continue for a while, I must confess, but the consequences are not going to be good for Nigeria because, in the next five years, we will feel the full impact,” he said.
Otegbayo, however, pointed out that the problem was a global one, adding that the Federal Government was already taking action to find a solution to the negative trend. He said the government had set up a committee to look into it and suggest solutions.
He also disclosed that the committee of CMDs of tertiary hospitals has made presentations to the committee in which it suggested solutions.
Aside the increasing number of resignations, Otegbayo highlighted the challenges of high cost of diesel, epileptic electricity, bureaucratic bottlenecks in replacing staff, among others.
The don listed the hospital’s achievements in the last 65 years to include upgrade of physical structures, improvement in staff welfare and training, building more partnerships, and full accreditation for clinical departments.
He stressed that the hospital has pioneered training in emergency medicine under his leadership.