Federal Govt Bans Leave Absence For Health Workers Relocating Abroad | MarvelTvUpdates

The Minister of State for Health, Dr Tunji Alausa, on Saturday disclosed that the federal government had directed that health workers going abroad for greener pastures, must resign their appointment, before embarking on such a journey.

The Minister, who disclosed on Saturday during his visit to the Neuro-Psychiatric Hospital, Aro, Abeokuta, Ogun State, said the era of health workers exiting to other countries of the world in search of better offers after applying for the leave of absence is no longer acceptable.

He said the ban on the leave of absence for health workers followed the executive order issued by President Bola Tinubu as part of steps to combat the challenge of brain drain in the nation’s health sector, as a result of ‘japa syndrome’.

Dr. Alausa also revealed that the federal government has commenced aggressive production of manpower in the health sector, such that the annual enrollment of nurses which used to be 28,000 is now 68,000 and that by the end of this year, it would have gone up to 120,000.

He said that President Bola Tinubu considered the biggest asset of the country to be the people and has not only vowed but has taken proactive actions to ensure the health sector is in good shape so that the health of the people too won’t suffer.

Speaking on the challenge of manpower across the federal government-owned health institutions, Dr Alausa said, “The government is not unmindful of the ‘Japa’ effect on our manpower in the health sector and the President has ordered for massive production of manpower such that when people go, there will always be a replacement.

“It is against this background that we are working intensely on the enrollment of our nurses, what used to be 28,000 is now 68,000 and we intend to take it to 120,000 by the end of the year, so there will always be abundant skilled manpower to take over from those leaving the job.

“We have equally doubled our enrollment for Doctors, Dentistry, and Pharmacists among others

“Again, we didn’t say anyone who wants to move or japa to the UK or Australia to take up appointments there should not go, it is a free world.

“However you cannot eat your cake and have it, if you are going, just resign your appointments with the federal government, rather than applying for leave of absence, that is the Presidential executive order which has been communicated to all the Chief Medical Directors of Federal Government owned health facilities to implement.

“The problem with the leave of absence is that such a fellow is out there in the UK or Australia working, making money but his name still appears on the payment roll of the government and so to replace him is difficult because he is still being considered as a staff whereas he has left the country.

“So, to solve this problem, the President has directed that any health workers going abroad to work should just resign their appointment and not apply for leave of absence, this way, you won’t be blocking others who want to work and of course piling burdens for your colleagues that you left behind”

Responding to some of the demands of the hospital such as increased funding, and infrastructural development among other welfare packages, Dr. Alausa said that the Ministry will leave no stone unturned to do all that is necessary to improve the fortunes of the health sector in the country.

The Minister lauded the Provost and Chief Medical Director of the hospital for his commitment towards providing qualitative healthcare for Nigerians, saying that he was in the hospital to see how the present administration could further help to add more value to efforts of the hospital management.

Speaking earlier, the Provost and Chief Medical Director of the hospital, Dr. Paul Agboola lauded the Minister for his selflessness and passion to turn things around for good in the health sector.

Dr. Agboola said that as a result of the approval given by the Minister, his administration has started projects such as the Institute of Psychiatric for the hospital which had been in the pipeline for about 40 years.

He added that another project of a 40-bed mother and child hospital which would be sited at Ibafo is also about taking off while the hospital has equally commenced the General Nursing programme.

Agboola said that his administration remained committed to doing everything necessary and possible to continually make the hospital the centre of excellence in Neuro-Psychiatric across the globe.

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