Controversy over the leadership of university hospitals


‘A Bill to Amend the University Teaching Hospitals (Reconstitution of Councils, etc.) Act, Cap. U15, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004 to restructure the composition of the Board of Directors, review the nomenclature of Heads of Hospitals, redefine the qualifications of Heads of Hospitals, provide a defined term of office of Heads of Hospitals, including including health science students in hospital training programs and include hospitals established after the enactment of the existing legal framework in the schedule.’

Having followed with great attention the various opinions, in particular of the health professionals on the current modification of the Law on the university teaching hospitals, I consider most of the arguments useless and useless. However, this does not take away the necessity of certain clauses of the bill.

First and foremost, I am of the opinion that the administration of hospitals and other government facilities should be the exclusive domain of experienced administrators and should not be open to experts working in the establishment, thus allowing professionals to focus only on their job.

It is on the basis of the foregoing that I examine the request and the positions put forward by the unions of joint professionals in the health sector to open the management of university hospitals against the current practice where only doctors can be appointed medical directors, as incompetent and capable of throwing Nigerian public institutions into further confusion.

The House recently held a public hearing on the bill, which, among other amendments, seeks to include pharmacists, nurses and other healthcare professionals on the boards of teaching hospitals.

According to the bill sponsored by the Member of Parliament representing Ede South/Ede North/Ejigbo/Egbedore Federal Constituency of Osun State, Bamidele Salam, the bill seeks to revise the nomenclature of heads of hospitals ( chief medical director). It also aims to redefine the qualification of heads of hospitals, to ensure a definitive mandate for heads of hospitals, including health science students in the training programs of hospitals, and to include hospitals established after the promulgation of existing law. frame.

Salam, while leading the debate on the bill, noted that in the UK to become a hospital administrator you do not have to be a doctor.
“All you need is to graduate from secondary school (four years); obtain a bachelor’s degree in health care administration, business administration or a clinical discipline (four years); and a master’s degree in health care administration (MHA) or related graduate degree (two years), he said.
“You don’t bring your vast experience as a medical specialist with a stethoscope to run the hospital system. The same goes for other specialized healthcare professionals, whether they are pharmacists, laboratory scientists or other experts on the team.
According to Sallam, “Broadly speaking, there are four basic steps to becoming a hospital administrator: Obtain a bachelor’s degree in health systems and health services management or related disciplines; Obtain a master’s degree in hospital administration or health care administration; Gain experience and other certifications such as American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE) accreditation or Certified Medical Manager (CMM) accreditation, etc.
“It is clear from the cross-national discussion above that to be appointed CEO, one does not have to be a doctor. Holders of a bachelor’s degree in management or administration with the required experience can be appointed to head a hospital. Similarly, in the composition of the Hospital Council, other key stakeholders were not included. More attention has only been given to doctors,” he said.
This position was corroborated by the representatives of the professional hospital unions during the public hearing, who blame the rot of the country’s health sector on the bad administration and corruption of the CMDs.

Although I agree with Hon Sallam in that leading public institutions is an administrative role and does not require specialization to be knowledgeable, I do not think creating another flaw can remedy an existing flaw. Changing the law to allow other healthcare professionals to be eligible for leadership is extending a mistake rather than curing it.

I imagine that the drafters of laws, in an attempt to manage a scarce workforce and ensure administrative convenience, choose professionals at the heart of public facilities to run these institutions. Perhaps the legislator should be satisfied with providing for a compulsory course in administration or management to create a balance of knowledge, in the event of a complaint of lack of managerial tact.

For example, although there are other professionals involved in the management of the university system, the vice-chancellor must be chosen from the academic branch of the institution. The same goes for the judiciary, there are other support staff whose activities are also based on sound knowledge and professionalism, but only a judge can become a chief justice and president of the court. Appeal and Chief Justice of Nigeria.

For once I thought the argument would be that the administrative system of teaching hospitals should be completely separated from basic health professional duty and that the chief administrative officer should be the chief accountant while the chief medical director directs the professional setting.

This, to me, would be a more valid argument, but might as well not solve the problem of corruption which is the imaginary central point of this speech. Assuming without admitting that all medical specialists are corrupt, therefore, other professionals should be allowed to run hospitals for effective management, what will then happen is that we will eventually realize that pharmacists, nurses or psychotherapists are much more corrupt than doctors. I’m not trying to condemn the administrative acumen of any professional practice, but my point remains that you don’t have to be a doctor to be incredibly corrupt, corruption is a societal issue and all professionals are products of the same company.


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