by ndubuisi edeoga
While we all wait patiently for the new Nigerian Health minister, and we form our opinions about his/her job requirements, lets take stock of the various duties that we owe to ourselves, our patients, our families, our relatives, and our friends. Lets see ways that we can make the job of the in coming minister easier.
By adequately equipping ourselves and adequately informing our patients using the various easily and often times free channels,we would all be in a better position to offer well balanced criticisms, advice and suggestions,that would help in resolving the "difficult" problem of governance in Nigeria, especially in the health sector.
I have had the opportunity to see the practice of medicine in a developing country and in the developed countries, and I have come to the conclusion (rather subjective) that even though the building and all its contents, MRI, CT scans, Linear accelerators, etc etc make for better medical practice the physicians and other health professionals that work inside these buildings make the difference.
To put this in perspective "how many times have anyone reading this blog gotten an MRI in the past 2 years,I can see only one or two hand raised" . Now how many people on this forum have gone to a clinic without any major equipment used, I can see many more hands.
My point exactly, let all physicians and health care professional reading this blog, make use of the free sites available on the web and get more continuing medical education (CME), let your patients know about sites that they can get more information about preventive health, staying healthy and when they are sick to learn more about their sicknesses. such sites as WebMd , medscape, and pri-med. Make use of the free sites such as google Health, Microsoft Healthvault, and so many others available on the web and for a one pass summary of all the good sites go to noedb These sites can assist you in organizing your patient information , so that we can have a ready source of birth rates, death rates, number of pneumonia and Hib's in your clinic in one week, one month , and in the year, and so many other rates that people keep asking for on the various groups that I belong to, and I guess they never seem to get what they need.
Knowledge they say is power ( and that was before the web 2.0 came into the game, imagine what we can do with knowledge and the power of the web), if we adequately inform ourselves, our patients, friends, and relatives, we would all be in a better position to demand our "birth-rights" or "health-rights" from the new health minister and our political leaders.