The Health Facility Monitoring and Accreditation Agency (HEFAMAA) has shut down Vedic Lifecare Hospital in Lekki, Lagos state, for “employing unlicensed expatriates”.
Announcing the closure yesterday, Abiola Idowu, executive secretary of the agency, said the expatriate staff have not been certified to practice locally.
“The facility was shut down for engaging three foreign doctors and a nurse with unverified certificates and without licenses from any professional body”, she said.
She, however, said the closure of the hospital does not affect the in-patients already admitted.
According to Idowu, the agency received information that some facilities are engaging foreign-based transient medical doctors (FBTMD) who come into the state, stay for a period of time to provide medical care to patients and perform medical procedures before returning to their respective countries.
Also speaking on the development, Yemisi Solanke-Koya, chairperson of the agency’s governing board, said the practice raises concerns regarding the regulatory oversight of healthcare in the state.
Solanke-Koya said she was particularly concerned about the credentials and experience of such health workers, as well as if the hospitals employing them meet the standards required by the agency.
She warned hospitals in Lagos to desist from using foreigners whose certificates and licences have not been verified by the Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria (MDCN).
She, however, said Akin Abayomi, commissioner for health, has directed the agency to implement a policy that will ensure that FBTMDs are approved by the MDCN to practice medicine in the country.
According to her, such approval must be submitted and duly registered with HEFAMAA prior to commencement of medical practice in the state to safeguard the health of Lagosians, and hold the facilities engaging FTDMBs accountable.