Association of Medical Laboratory Scientists of Nigeria (AMLSN) has condemned what “the tacit embargo” on employment of laboratory scientists in most federal health facilities across the country.
This assertion was made during a press conference held Saturday evening by the association at the end of its 13th public health lecture series and 198th national executive council meeting at Ibom Hall, Uyo, Akwa Ibom State.
The national publicity secretary, Dr. Casmir Ifeanyi, described the trend as disservice to the country’s health sector, stressing that such poses serious danger to the country’s health system.
“Of utmost concern to us also is the tacit embargo on employment of medical laboratory scientists in most federal medical centres, teaching hospitals and general hospitals across the country. Not even a single medical laboratory scientist has been recruited in the numerous centres in the last 10 to 15 years.
“Apparently, the challenge with recruitment of medical laboratory scientists across the country is but a national disservice that portends disaster to the health system. The politicisation of the healthcare system by Nigerian doctors may be blamed for this ugly development.
“We call on President Muhammadu Buhari to order the replacement of retired and dead medical laboratory scientists and the immediate employment of medical laboratory scientists in federal tertiary health institutions, to bridge the manpower deficit.
“In most tertiary hospitals, the medical laboratory scientist-doctor-patient ratio has become so distorted such that professionals are frequently overwhelmed by workload, and that can, of course, occasion misdiagnosis and poor quality service delivery,” the body noted.
AMLSN further alleged that most federal health institutions secretly deploy non-professionals in the laboratories, noting that such violates the extant laws.
“We note with displeasure the surreptitious employment of quacks in federal tertiary health institutions in Nigeria, and the reckless manner in which persons with qualification in industrial chemistry, zoology and related biological sciences are now being employed to provide medical laboratory testing.
“This violates not only the laws of the federation, but endangers the uninformed health-seeking members of the public.
“In the well over 20,000 primary healthcare centres in Nigeria, medical laboratory service components hardly exist, barring the Abuja Municipal Council Area of the FCT, where only few exist. The situation is very disheartening considering that PHCs are the closest point of care to the healthcare-seeking members of the public.”
Source: Medical World Nigeria