The Coordinating Minister of Health and Social Welfare, Prof. Ali Pate, announced that the government has recruited 2,497 healthcare workers in the last six months to strengthen the manpower shortage in the sector.

Prof. Pate made this disclosure on Wednesday, February 28, at the third edition of the ministerial press briefing series initiated by the Ministry of Information in Abuja to provide a platform to reel out achievements and inform Nigerians of the challenges in governance.

The recruitment is to include more doctors, midwives, nurses, and community health workers as well.

He stated that the plan was to inject the N50bn into the primary healthcare sector.

“This infusion of funds will breathe new life into our primary healthcare facilities, ensuring that quality care is accessible to all citizens,” Pate said.

Punch reports that at the end of 2023, 1,417 resident doctors moved to the United Kingdom and the United States of America.

Also, the Medical and Dental Consultants Association of Nigeria disclosed that nine out of every 10 medical and dental consultants were flying out of the country.

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This connotes that the health sector in Nigeria is gradually losing more manpower.

Giving reasons to this degrading nature in the health sector, quite several reasons are held responsible such as insecurity, poor remuneration, inadequate facilities, and lack of basic infrastructure, in conducive work conditions and economic conditions.

However, Pate announced that the president and government are making remarkable strides in enhancing healthcare quality and revitalizing the primary healthcare facilities as well.

“Through sustained investment and strategic partnerships, we have expanded access to vital healthcare services, particularly in rural and underserved areas, improving health outcomes and reducing the burden of preventable diseases.

“As a result of our efforts, we have recorded an increase in the proportion of women who attend antenatal care. Over 550,000 women now attend their first antenatal care and are armed with the right information and care to improve their pregnancy outcomes and reduce maternal and child mortality.

“The achievements we have recorded signal progress and improvements. To sustain and continue to build on these gains, in the last six months, the Government of Nigeria recruited 2,497 doctors, midwives/nurses to bridge the gaps due to attrition.

“An additional 1,400 health facilities now have skilled birth attendants to assist in deliveries at the health facilities. This has increased the number of health facility deliveries to as high as 230,000 deliveries per month,” he said.