FG launches curriculum on medical services, inaugurates committee on road crashes

The Federal Government launched a new curriculum on Emergency Medical Services (EMS) in Nigeria, recently in Abuja.
The Minister of Health, Prof. Onyebuchi Chukwu, while launching the curriculum, said that the EMS curriculum was aimed at ensuring standard academic and professional training for emergency response workers.

He said that deaths during road crashes were usually occasioned by poor emergency response services which was why the National Committee on Road Crash Information System was also inaugurated.
He said “A lot of preventable deaths in Nigeria are caused by delayed access to emergency care. A significant number of lives are lost daily in road traffic injuries, plane crashes and insurgency.

“These deaths are caused by delayed access to emergency medical service response and organised pre-hospital trauma systems in the country.”
Prof. Chukwu said that prior to the launch, paramedics in Nigeria carried unrecognised certificates and as such were not recognised by government for employment into the civil service.
He stressed that with the curriculum, paramedics on completing the 5-year course, would be duly recognised and absorbed into the civil service and other emergency response agencies.

On the newly-inaugurated committee on road crashes, Chukwu said that the committee would function to harmonize and streamline road traffic crashes data collected from relevant agencies.
He said that the concerned agencies were to periodically collate road traffic crashes data from different sources, review and come up with an acceptable single data for the country.
In his remarks, the Chief Executive Officer, Federal Road Safety Corps, Corps Marshal Osita Chidoka, said that the FRSC would integrate paramedic services into the criteria for employment of emergency response staff of the Commission.

Also speaking, Director, Paramedics, University of Benin Teaching Hospital (UBTH), Dr Pius Iribhogbe, in his presentation, recommended that all states should commence emergency medical response services.
He suggested that a law establishing the National Emergency Services be enacted and a competent Director-General appointed to supervise the activities of the emergency medical services in the states.

He called on the Federal Ministry of Health to offer great financial support for paramedic training, and urged relevant organisations to absorb paramedics into their system.

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