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Stop taking unprescribed drugs, Lawmaker advises Nigerians

by Editor

By Fatima Mohammed-Lawal

Hon Amos Magaji, the Chairman of the House of Representatives Committee on Health Institutions, has advised Nigerians to always seek Medical advice from experts before taking drugs for ailments.

Magaji made the call while speaking with newsmen, on the sidelines of the Committee’s visit to the University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital (UITH) on oversight function.

He said that there is increase in cases of Renal and Liver problems in the country, adding that the cause of this has been attributed to indiscriminate consumption of unrecommended drugs by the people.

“Many Nigerians are used to taking different types of drugs including Agbo (local herbs) and other drugs not prescribed by medical experts without thinking of their effects and that is why cases of Renal and Liver diseases is becoming rampant among our people.

“Nigerians should desist from taking unprescribed drugs, they should seek medical advice from experts before they take drugs when they are sick,” he said.

He also caution them against taking drugs that are very cheap which they usually buy from roadside health vendors adding that they should take prescriptions from experts and renowned pharmacy in the country so as to live long.

Magaji obeserved that though people are complaining of high cost of drugs in the country, but it is better to take expensive drugs than to take cheap drugs that will send you to early grave.

The Health Committee Chairman also adcised Nigerians to always embark on periodic health checks to know their health status saying that they should not wait until the time that they are sick before conducting health checks either in hospital or approved laboratories.

He said: “People should develop the culture of periodic health check on their body. They should not wait until the time they are sick before going to the hospital.

“They should go to radiology department to know the condition of their body system. This will also assist doctors to know their health status when they get to the hospital”.

Magaji said that health for all is possible if certain things are done to our health facilities and government takes action to improve the performance of the National Health insurance Scheme.

“The government should increase capitation of the National Health insurance. As at present, the National Health insurance covers below 20 percent of the people.

“It should be increased to about 80% and you cannot have health for all if people are still paying from their pocket,” he said.

Magaji said that from the oversight function conducted at UITH, the committee discovered that the capital component given to the hospital was too low in the 2022/2023 budget. adding that the hospital’s budget for capital projects was below N1billion as against the recurrent of N14 billion.

According to him, with this oversight function, our assessment is that the capital allocation for the hospital is too low.

“If we want to reverse the medical tourism in this country, we have to develop infrastructure and replace key equipment in our hospitals and there should be change of attitude of our medical professionals”, he said.

He said that the Committee would work towards increasing capital budgetary allocation to health institutions in the 2025 budget.

In his comments, Prof. Abdullahi Yusuf, the Chief Medical Director of UITH, while appreciating the Committee for their visit stated that the committee should ensure that medical tourism is brought to the minimum.

Yusuf said that the health committee met with the management of the hospital and offered useful advice.

He explained that some challenges facing the hospital included poor power supply, high cost of diesel and shortage of funds.

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