The “Bill for an Act to amend the University Teaching Hospitals (Recondition of Boards etc.) ACT CAP U15 LFN 2004” has expectedly generated lots of negative reactions from the members of the medical and dental consultants of Nigeria (MDCAN), who see themselves as more superior and advanced than the rest of the hospital staff. They have always been inexorable to breakthrough ideas that seeks to develop hospital administration. May be, they prefer stagnation. But why always ‘put a spanner in the works’? Otherwise, this is an excellent bill that would ensure progress in patient care and administration. The following are My answers to the MDCAN’s position on this bill.
First and foremost, it doesn't matter who sponsored the bill as long as it aims to address the issues in the hospital; there is nothing inappropriate or objectionable about it. Where each important and critical stakeholder would have the opportunity to manage and direct the hospital’s business. After all, all university undergraduate degree is the same. The good news is that it doesn’t appear that anyone is operating through the back door, unless you mean that the National Assembly is the back door in which case we would like the MDCAN to show us the front door. Many other important key stakeholders in the hospital’s management have been marginalized by the so-called global best practises which MDCAN is resolute and determined to maintain. Furthermore, there is a disparity between good practise and best practise, with good practise demanding drawing everyone along. Global best practice, is not working, it has never worked.
The hospital management arrangement and set up, as it's currently structured does more harm than good to the other cadres of staff and the patient, who is central to everything. Anyone, can become the Chief Medical Director of a tertiary hospital, its an administrative position that medical doctors are not more adapt or better at. Everyone fulfils and goes through the same university program. The medical training doesn't give doctors any edge or advantage over the rest of the hospital staff. I would like a situation, where everyone will be given a fair chance and equal opportunity to become CMD.
Secondly, patient care is a team effort, involving every member of staff in the hospital. The doctors cannot claim therefore to know it better. This is an equitable bill that would turnaround the management of tertiary hospitals in Nigeria to a more cohesive and equitable one. Where the patient will receive excellent qualitative service and his interest will be best represented. We cannot use studies with implausible evidence that are full of biases from (Stoller et al 2016, Rotar 2016, Good all 2011, Clay-Williams 2017, and Gupta 2019) to form the basis of the argument. Besides, these studies are qualitative papers, because of their obvious bias, qualitative studies will never produce reliable & accurate results. It frequently results in erroneous and misleading conclusions because it reflects only the perception and experience of a few. Where most respondents, may or may not be truthful in their responses.
Lastly, its a good thing that MDCAN members are now more interested in research, which was not the case, the last time they engaged ASUU. But research is not as simplistic as you would like us to believe. Infact, the field of research, is now too complex to understand. It has developed to a level of complexity that makes it hard for MDCAN members who are still living in the past to understand.