Nurses express concern over shortage of manpower in public health sector

Members of the National Association of Nigerian Nurses and Midwives (NANNM) have expressed concern over the shortage of nurses and midwives in public health facilities in the country.

The National President of the association, Alhaji Abdulrafiu Adeniji, expressed the concern at the 6th quadrennial National Delegates Conference of the association in Osogbo on Saturday.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the conference has as its theme: “Nursing Education in Contemporary Nigeria System; Issues and Challenges.’’

Adeniji said it had become imperative for the government to address the issues of acute shortage of Nurses and Midwives to guarantee adequate health service delivery.

He said that the shortage was an irony of sort, in the face of “torrents of qualified nurses and midwives “who are unemployed.

Adeniji said this anomaly had been responsible for the continuous brain drain, coupled with lack of adequate remuneration and incentives.

He said that stagnation in the promotion of his members and threat of demotion and reduction in the take-home pay were also serious challenges facing nurses and midwives at various health facilities around the country.

Adeniji further condemned the disparity between the remuneration of his members and other professionals in the sector and called for urgent intervention by the Federal Ministry of Labour.

“It is pertinent to draw the attention of the government to the acute shortage of nurses and midwives in our public health facilities despite the high number of qualified unemployed professionals.

“We also want the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari to look into the issues of arbitrary demotion of our members and the increasing cases of victimisation so that there would not be brain drain.

“Our members are confronted with the challenge of discrimination by the disparity of remuneration between our profession and other medical professionals.

“All these and many more must be addressed by the government to put the sector in a right footing,” he said.

Adeniji also called for adequate infrastructural and functional equipment in the sector, alongside consistent advocacy towards appropriate maintenance culture.