By Kehinde Emmanuel, Ilorin
Association of Resident Doctors (ARD), University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital chapter, has commended Kwara State Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq for funding the commencement of residency training for medical doctors for the first time in state hospitals.
Speaking at the January edition of its Ordinary General Meeting and Scientific Conference on Saturday, ARD UITH President Dr Dele Abdullahi said the Governor is clearly committed to the growth of the health sector and deserves commendations for his efforts, especially the residency training that has now begun in the state.
The residency training followed the first-of-its-kind accreditation of the state’s premier hospital —Ilorin General Hospital — for the training of resident doctors, among other health professionals.
“You are a Governor that listens to us. We at ARD UITH are very grateful as we have always enjoyed your support. You have supported our outreaches, you listen to us, and you give us the platform to reach for greater heights,” Dr. Abdullahi said.
“Under you, the residency training started in Kwara State. This is one huge achievement we cannot push aside. We will keep reaching out to you, we hope that this open door policy that you have pushed forward as well as your cordiality will always be there. The residency training means that we can now train more doctors in the state and that will impact positively on the sector.”
In a short address to the conference, the Governor commended health professionals for their selfless service to humanity and restated the administration’s commitment to improvement of facilities and workers’ welfare.
The Governor said he took part in the zoom meeting to understand the theme of the conference which is ‘Medical Residency Training Act: Interpretation and controversies’ especially because the state has only recently commenced the programme.
The keynote speaker was Dr. Onyebueze John Ugochukwu who dwelt extensively on the Residency Act of 2017 and its purports for medical profession in the country.
“For us to be able to understand and draw up policies, we have to always listen to all constituencies and arguments from all divides. I’m glad I’m tuned in to this. I have listened to the issues at stake, some of which I already knew about. Understanding these issues helps us to better address the challenges,” the Governor said.
“We are not taking you (medical practitioners) for granted. The challenge in not meeting all your needs isn’t that we don’t care. It is simply because of limited resources at both national and subnational levels. There are other areas to take care of but we certainly do understand that without health being attended to, other things will simply collapse. Your contributions to humanity are truly appreciated. We cannot thank you or remunerate you enough for what you do. At the state level, we’ll continue to expand the facilities as well as attend to your welfare within available resources . As you all know, the state of our health needs to be improved upon and we are working so hard to make sure that facilities and health workers are given proper attention.”
Kwara has also recently approved better remunerations for its health workers, including medical doctors, to halt the former higher rate of attrition.
The AbdulRazaq administration had recently secured accreditations from the West Africa College of Surgeon to train resident doctors in O & G and approval from National Post Graduate Medical College of Nigeria to train resident doctor in family medicine.
Presently, the Ilorin General Hospital is in the process of applying for accreditation in paediatric and ophthalmology departments because of the huge investments and commitment of the administration to the health sector.