There is an ongoing tussle in Osun state over which professional discipline should head the Primary Healthcare Development Board.
Osun State House of Assembly on Monday invited professional bodies and other stakeholders in the health sector to seek enlightenment, on who should be the Permanent Secretary of the proposed agency and Secretary of the board.
The state Chairman of the Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria, Mr Tiamiyu Sunmonu, recommended that the position should be left open for any professional in the healthcare delivery to occupy. He said this would give all the relevant professionals in the health sector a sense of belonging.
The Chairman, Nigeria Medical Laboratory Scientist, Mr. Wakeel Alade, said the position of Permanent Secretary was a career position, which not only medical doctors, but other professional bodies, as well, should be allowed to enjoy. According to him, no professional in the sector can do the work of healthcare service alone without the involvement of other professionals.
But the Chairman, Nigeria Medical Association (NMA), Dr. Suraj Ogunyemi, said the position should be left for medical doctors to ensure effective service delivery. He said in some other states where the law was in practice, doctors are the head of the agency.
Dr. Olatunji Babatunde of the Health Reform Foundation of Nigeria said that though, healthcare delivery was a teamwork, the training of medical doctors was all encompassing.
He said the position should be occupied by medical doctor, but with public healthcare training.
The Head of Service, Mr. Sunday Owoeye, said “It is not enough to possess the required training, but it must be backed up with character and ability to execute the policy of government effectively.”
So the question is: Who does the cap fit?