Dr. Felix Archibong, the chairman of the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) in Cross River State, has demanded an increase in the state’s physician pay scale.
In an interview conducted in his office, Dr. Archibong claimed that the vast discrepancy in pay between physicians employed by state employers and those working at federal tertiary medical institutions, along with a lack of incentives, had caused a mass exodus of physicians.
“We are requesting that the government equalize the pay between federal and state doctors,” Archibong stated. In this manner, the unpleasant tide will be significantly stopped.
“The doctors require new and updated training. So that the few doctors still working for the state won’t be overworked, they should be swiftly awarded pay comparable to those of their peers in federal service.”
In addition, Archibong discussed the state’s inadequate healthcare infrastructure and the fatalities of patients.
He demanded that state teaching hospitals be built in certain regions of the state, claiming that people risk their lives by traveling up to eight hours to reach Calabar’s tertiary medical facilities.
Cross River is very large. Patients sometimes pass away on their way to the tertiary hospitals in Calabar as a result of this distance.
“Some patients even pass away en route to tertiary hospitals when they travel that far on a terrible road as we have here, especially on referrals.
“State teaching hospitals should be built in Ogoja and Ikom to serve patients from those remote districts.”