From Mustapha Adamu, Kano
The National President of Private Medical Laboratory Proprietors Association of Nigeria (PMLPAN), Ironkwe Okechukwu Chuks, has said that there are only three internationally accredited laboratories in the country.
He said while South Africa has 269 internationally accredited laboratories, Nigeria has only 3, despite its huge population.
Speaking at the formal inauguration /sensitisation workshop of its members, held at Grand Central Hotel in Kano yesterday, Chuks said there are over 8,000 laboratories operating across Nigeria, adding that they provided about 60,000 direct or indirect jobs.
According to him, laboratory services has now become a key sector in Nigeria’s economy, calling on the government to intervene in its commitment to economic diversification.
He pointed out that lack of regulation was the major problem bidevilling laboratory services in the country.
He also highlighted that poor infrastructures, lack of stable power supply as well as inadequate facilities are other challenges faced by the association.
“There is also a problem of unreliable diagnosis and result. Then unethical conduct as well as uneasiness of doing business is other problems we are facing. That is why we are calling on governments to intervene.
“It is necessary for us to organize a business summit, to call all the stakeholders in the sphere of economy to come and brainstorm on the need to intervene in our services and see how we could improve our services for the benefit of Nigerians, “ he said
In his remarks, the Kano State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Kabiru Ibrahim Getso, expressed the commitment of the state government to health sector.
Getso, represented by the Director Medical Service in the ministry, Dr Saidu Muhammad, said that the administration of Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje has provided unprecedented diagnosis equipment, such CT Scan Machine and M. R. I.
He added that governor Ganduje has spent huge amount of money in the health sector, adding that the sector has received utmost priority by the governor.