-It shows that we don’t prioritise our needs- Ohuabunwa
The Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria, PSN has condemned the action of the federal government in cutting budgetary allocation to health, saying it shows insensitivity on the part of government to the needs of the nation.
The Society says it is totally unacceptable for the government to slash by almost half budgetary allocation to health, while allocation for the renovation of the National Assembly complex is left untouched.
The PSN President, Pharm.(Mazi) Sam Ohuabunwa in an exclusive interview with Pharmanewsonline stressed the need for government to prioritise healthcare needs of citizens above any other need,especially at such a time of global pandemic.
He said: “This is wrong prioritisation at such a critical time of pandemic. It shows we don’t prioritise our needs as a nation and the government need to prioritise expenditures.
“Government need to cut cost in the areas of avoidable expenses, such as the NASS renovation, which can be done at a later time.
“Although borrowing is good to boost economic activities, but not for avoidable expenses without investment in human ccapital.
Ohuabunwa further argued that National Assembly members can have their plenary online as other institutions are embracing digital meetings from home, while working from home for the time being.
He insisted that the NASS complex renovation should be put on hold while the government invest in human capital and economic activities, which will enhance the quick recovery of the nation’s economy from the effects of the pandemic .
On the protection of pharmacists from the scourge of the virus, as more and more health workers are coming down with the infection, he said government should ensure adequate protection for pharmacists in their employ, while owners of pharmacies should provide protective gear for their staff.
“It is the responsibility of government and private employers to provide protective gear for their employees, given the limited resources, government may not be able to make provision for pharmacists in the community, but hospital pharmacists in government institutions must be protected by government, while owners of pharmacies must provide for their employees”, he stressed.
Although he disclosed that only 10 pharmacists have tested positive to the virus since the outbreak in the country, he maintained that maximum protection of healthcare practitioners is mandatory to prevent more numbers being infected.
Ohuabunwa has also advised pharmacists in the country to treat all patients as suspected cases for their own safety and to curb the spread of the infection.