FG okays engagement of retired doctors, nurses, others on contract basis


The Federal Government has given the nod for engagement of
retired health workers, mostly medical doctors, nurses, and other clinical
healthcare workers, on contract basis.


The government, in a circular to this effect, said salaries
of the retired health personnel re-engaged would be the same amount they were
collecting before their retirement.


The Ministry of Health, in a circular dated October 5, 2023,
and directed to the Chief Executive Agencies, Chief Medical Directors, Medical
Directors, and Heads of Regulatory Bodies and Schools, urged them to ensure compliance
with an earlier circular issued by the Office of the Head of the Civil Service
of the Federation to all staff in their institutions.


The circular, signed by the Permanent Secretary, Service
Policies and Strategies Office, Olufemi Oloruntoba, for the Head of the Civil
Service of the Federation read in part: “I am directed to refer to the
above-mentioned memorandum presented at the 44th National Council on
Establishment held from 5th to 9th December 2022, in Yola, Adamawa State,
requesting a review of the current retirement age of Medical/Dental Consultants
and other health professionals from 60 to 70 and 75, respectively.”


The Council’s memorandum

It read: “After careful consideration of the memorandum, the
council rejected the request based on the following:


“Professionals in the health sector were leaving the country
because of pecuniary consideration and unfavourable conditions of service and
not as a result of retirement age;


“Some state government had already increased the retirement
age of medical doctors and other health workers and this has not addressed the
spate of brain drain.”


Also, it said it was dissatisfied with health workers’
attitude to work, noting that in spite of efforts by the government to
encourage health workers, the exodus of health workers had not abated.

The circular further read: “Council, however, approved that
clinical health workers who have attained the compulsory retirement age/years
may be given contract appointment on the same salary scale level that they
retired on if desired and deserved.


“Government should engage the Medical and Dental Council of
Nigeria, and the Nigerian Medical Association to extract some level of
commitment from medical doctors.


“To address the observed dissatisfaction with the attitude
of health workers to work, there is a need to institutionalise an effective
performance management system in the public service in order to improve the
work ethics of the medical officers and consultant, and medical doctors should
show more patriotism in the discharge of their duties and avoid holding the
system to ransom.”


The circular titled ‘Re: Review of retirement age to 65 and
70 years for health professionals and medical/dental consultants,’ with
reference number HCSF/SPSO/ODD/CND/100/S./145, was addressed to the Permanent
Secretary, Ministry of Health.


Consequently, the Ministry of Health in its circular urged
all executives of agencies, chief medical directors, medical directors, and
heads of regulatory bodies and schools to ensure strict compliance with the
directive from the OHCSF.


The circular, signed by the Deputy of Appointment, Promotion
and Discipline, Daloba Edward, for the Coordinating Minister of Health and
Social Welfare, Prof. Ali Pate, was referenced C.4007/T.2/37.


Recall that the office of the OHCSF had in a circular dated
August 30, 2023, rejected the upward review of the current retirement age of
Medical/Dental Consultants and other health professionals from 60 to 70 and 75,


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