An executive member of the World
Medical Association and former President of the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA),
Dr. Osahon Enabulele, has called for the full implementation of the Medical
Residency Training Act of 2017, signed into law by President Buhari in June
Dr. Enabulele made the call at the
39th Ordinary General Meeting and Scientific Conference of the National
Association of Resident Doctors (NARD), recently held in Benin City.
Speaking on ‘The Corollary of Government Policies on Residency Training” in Nigeria, he noted that the government had already addressed the issues of issuance of a uniform template to guide the appointment and admission into the Residency Training Programme (RTP); issuance of a policy statement directing strict adherence to the established scheme of service; and the enactment of the Medical Residency Training Act, MRTA, 2017.
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These policies, he said, have to an
extent, looked into “some defects in the training programme, particularly as it
concerns the determination of the career progression of Resident doctors;
funding of the programme; the admission and entry requirements for the
programme; and the standardization of the structure and classification of the
He mentioned the impact of the RTP
to include the production of indigenous specialist medical and dental manpower,
and improved access to specialist medical and dental care, while calling on the
government to implement it fully, to enable them overcome the challenges of
budgetary allocations and releases for the program at federal and state levels;
differential, varied and arbitrary application of training guidelines, rules
and duration of training period by training institutions; defective
recruitment, admissions and replacement policies and processes plagued by
federal character/quota system, administrative shenanigans and bureaucratic
red-tapism; lack of slots for residency training; Inefficient and ineffective
manpower development plans; poor state of health infrastructure and training
facilities; poor funding of the postgraduate medical colleges, amongst others.
Dr. Enabulele then recommended the involvement
of the government and stakeholders in the Nigerian health project to ensure the
sustenance and advancement of the Residency Training Program (RTP), in Nigeria,
as well as a regular and holistic review of the RTP, every 3-4 years.