Calabar — Many senior medical practitioners from the University of Calabar Teaching Hospital have completed their papers to travel overseas for greener pasture. The number of those leaving the country are said to be between 15 and 20.
Chief medical director of UCTH, Prof Ikpeme Ikpeme, stated this in Calabar while answering questions from journalists shortly after facility tour of projects at the hospital in Calabar at the weekend.
Ikpeme stated that it is unfortunate that the second in command in the hospital left the hospital for greener pasture to Saudi Arabia, a development the chief medical director said if not checked may cripple activities at the hospital due to shortage of skilled manpower.
The chief medical director stated, "As we speak, there are at least 15 or 20 others who have their papers processed and are just waiting to leave. The brain drain issue is real. We need to find a way to retain our professionals."
On how to get the problems solved, the UCTH chief medical director stated that the basic problem is welfare and working conditions and the general socio- economic stability of the country.
"Once those things become stabilized, people would stay. Am aware that government is working on it," Ikpeme maintained.
The UCTH chief medical director stressed that arrangement is in advanced stage for deployment of electronics health information management system in the hospital whereby every accounting procedure would move from paper to electronics.
He said with electronics accounting, intervention time would be faster stressing that staff of the department would no longer have need to move with paper from one unit to the other.
"You don't need to lose data, you sit down in the clinic, do your prescription for a patient and the patient goes to the pharmacy without carrying any piece of paper, and prescription is immediately done for dispensation," he added.