Nigerian doctors in diaspora justify reasons to not return home

NIGERIAN medical practitioners based in the United States of America under the aegis of the Association of Nigerian Physicians in the Americas on Tuesday said they were determined to relocate to the country if the Federal Government could provide incentives for them.

The doctors, led by their National President, Nkem Chukwumerije, stated this in Abuja when their executive officers paid a courtesy call on the Chairman, Senate Committee on Health, Senator Lanre Tejuosho, at the National Assembly complex.

The ANPA members said they were interested in returning home to help their fatherland but lamented the government had not done enough to encourage them.

Chukwumerije listed poor remuneration, inadequate modern equipment and a lack of low interest loans for those who want to set up medical facilities in Nigeria as some of the impediments to their homecoming.

He said, “The major barrier preventing the relocation of medical doctors back to Nigeria is incentive. Every human character and behaviour is linked to incentives. Some of the incentives to get back the medical doctors abroad to Nigeria are not in place.

“Most of us here love our country and our hearts are in Nigeria but we just have to be physically at another country. We are very passionate about improving health care system here but the incentives, especially remuneration sends people out and force them to remain abroad.

“Another thing is a lack of proper equipment to work with. Most people abroad honestly want to come back. But to physically relocate, we will need the right financial incentives.

“The Federal Government should provide low interest loans for health care workers so that medical practitioners abroad could bring their money and have access to low interest loans.”

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