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903 foreign trained graduates take medical exam
A total of 903 foreign-trained Medical and Dental graduates on Wednesday sat for an assessment examination organized by the Nigerian Medical and Dental Council to be qualified for medical practice in Nigeria.
Explaining the reason behind the examination, Registrar of the Nigerian Medical and Dental Council, Tajudeen Sanusi said that the examination is a global practice that helps to ascertain the level of competency of medical and dental graduates trained outside their jurisdiction.
“Assessment exam for the foreign-trained medical and dental graduates is a global practice that if you trained in a jurisdiction other than yours and you go to another jurisdiction, they want to assess your level of competency so that you can be licensed to practice,” Sanusi said at the headquarters of Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB), Bwari, the venue of the examination
“Meaning that even those of us that were trained and fully registered in Nigeria, if we decide to go to Ghana, they have to sit for the assessment exam and pass before being licensed to practice in Ghana.”
Asked if how many of the graduates would be registered after the examination, he said though, Nigeria needs more doctors, “quantity cannot be taken for quality.”
“If all of them can pass, I would be fine because we need more doctors in Nigeria, but because we don’t have enough does not mean we should take quantity for quality.”
There is no accurate data on the number of medical doctors currently practicing in Nigeria
In 2015, Folashade Ogunsola , a professor of medicine and chairman, Association of Colleges of Medicine of Nigeria said Nigeria needed no fewer than 237,000 medical doctors to meet World Health Organisation (WHO) standard, and there are about 35,000 doctors working in the country today.
WHO’s ratio for any country to have enough doctors for its population is 1:600 (one doctor of every 600 persons, but it is estimated that at least 2,000 medical doctors leave Nigeria yearly for the United Kingdom, United States, Canada, Australia, United Arab Emirates (UAE), and South Africa.
Speaking about the incidence of quackery in medical practice, Sanusi remarked that quackery is a matter for law enforcement agencies to tackle.
“By our law, anybody that is not in our register list, we have nothing to do with that person. At the best, we can only come in as a prosecution witness when they are arraigned before any court of competent jurisdiction.”