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Akwa Ibom: Health Care Institutions Struggle amid Alarming Shortage of Medical Workers

Several health institutions in Akwa Ibom State, including cottage hospitals and primary health care centers are facing closure due to a critical shortage of health workers. The State Chairman of the Medical and Health Workers’ Union of Nigeria (MHWUN), Godwin Archibong, expressed deep concern over the impact of this situation on healthcare delivery in the region.

During the inauguration of the union’s modern secretariat office complex in Uyo, Archibong disclosed that more than 10 health facilities across various local governments had already ceased operations due to lack of manpower.

Archibong emphasized the severe repercussions, particularly highlighting the challenges faced during the COVID-19 pandemic when the inadequacy of health workers became acutely apparent. The closure of these health institutions has exacerbated the strain on an already stretched healthcare system.

Addressing another critical issue, Archibong drew attention to the deplorable state of facilities at the School of Health Technology in Etinan. Describing it as a ‘glorified secondary school,’ he expressed concern about the institution’s standards and accreditation status. Notably, he highlighted the unique situation where graduates from this institution are unable to participate in the one-year National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) due to non-accreditation of most of their courses.

In response to these challenges, the Commissioner for Health, Prof. Augustine Umoh, assured the public that the government is fully committed to addressing the concerns raised by the Medical and Health Workers’ Union. Prof. Umoh, representing Governor Umo Eno, pledged the government’s dedication to recruiting more health workers and undertaking measures to enhance the standard of the School of Health Technology in Etinan.

These initiatives are aimed at revitalizing the healthcare sector and ensuring that the citizens have access to quality healthcare services.

IMAGE: Premium times- Uchenna Igwe

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