This Day (Lagos)

31 December 2012

Nigerian Doctors Face Tough Times in the United Kingdom

The United Kingdom (UK) may be a land of opportunities, especially for those seeking better life for themselves, however, such opportunities seem to be shrinking, especially for Nigerian-trained medical doctors.

They have come under the focus of regulatory authorities for alleged ineptitude and this may affect not only the career progress of those practising in the UK but job opportunity for medical doctors trained in Nigeria who hope to move over to practise their profession in the UK.

A report by General Medical Council (GMC) and obtained by THISDAY, revealed that Nigerian and Indian doctors make up the chunk of medical practitioners who have been labelled as 'danger doctors' and have thus been blacklisted.

The investigation revealed that doctors classified under that category were said to have poor knowledge of medical practice and little awareness of medical treatment in the UK. Such inadequacies, the report observed, led to the suspension of 33 Nigerian medical doctors.

Nigeria with a record number of 3,564 medical doctors practising in the UK is now on the radar of the GMC after three Nigerian medical practitioners were delisted for their alleged ineptitude. In one case, a patient was said to have died from wrong administering of a drug, diamorphine.

In September, three Nigerians (names withheld) had their licences withdrawn due to what the GMC believed was based on various misconduct by the trio.

According to the report, India, Nigeria, Egypt, Pakistan, Iraq, France, Uganda and Cameroun have the highest cases of 'danger doctors'.

With growing concerns over the incident, health experts in the UK are calling for effective test and examination of doctors trained abroad before they could be licensed to practise in the UK.

The report looked at cases involving wrong diagnosis, poor administration of drugs and treatment of patients from 2008 to 2012. The report is another damning verdict on Nigerian trained doctors after the UK medical council early in the year blacklisted some Nigerian medical schools' graduates from practising in the UK.

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