Saturday 5 August
Ottawa’s famed Chateau Laurier hotel was a fitting venue for the 16th annual conference of the Canadian Association of Nigerian Physicians and Dentists. CANPAD as it is popularly known is an organisation that brings together physicians and dentists of Nigerian origin to enhance professional knowledge and develop strategies for assisting in improving health services in the motherland. The theme for the 2017 conference was : The medical Entrepreneur: Skills and Practice. Attendees included medical and dental practitioners from across Canada plus a small contingent from Nigeria that included the President of the Nigerian Medical Association, Dr. Mike Ogirima, and Nigerian Ministry of Health officials. Among the wide range of topics covered were: The fascinating journey of an entrepreneur in the Nigerian health sector, by Dr. Tayo Denton, which detailed the challenges of setting up a brand new private medical practice in Nigeria; Dealing with death: the intricate relationship between clinicians and the medical examiner by Dr. Bamidele Adeagbo; the Physician and disability management, by Dr. Itua Iriogbe; and Challenges and Innovation in cardio-vascular practice and education within resource-limited settings – insights from the National Hospital, Abuja, by Dr. Habibat Garuba, a fascinating picture of the speaker’s one month clinical rotation in a high-level teaching hospital in Nigeria’s capital. Dr. Henry Ukphe and Dr. Greg Appelt (a Canadian) provided innovative insights on how medical practitioners can create wealth while maintaining their clinical practices.
In an interview with Dr. Ogirima, President Nigerian Medical Association, he described how his organisation is collaborating with the Federal Government of Nigeria to ensure increased funding for the health sector and upgrade primary health services in the villages and rural areas. In his own interview the President of CANPAD Dr. Amara Anozie, said that his organisation has been involved in several medical missions to bring needed services too under-serviced areas of the country, as well as providing essential medical equipment and supplies to various parts of the country. His organisation is working on Memorandum of Understanding with the Nigerian Government to establish protocols and develop strategies to bring back essential skills from Nigerian Canadian medical specialists to enhance existing services.
All photos copyright Black Ottawa Scene