Experts Advocates Improved Health Care Accessibility As Dermatologists Holds 13th Annual Conference
The 13th Annual Scientific Conference and Annual General Meeting of the Nigerian Association of Dermatologists in Lagos, has come and gone. But there are note worthy development on accessing quality health care for all Nigerians.
Seasonnews.com.ng unfolds according to News Agency of Nigeria, regarding the submission of a medical practitioner and the Chairman, Total Health Trust Ltd., Dr Ladi Awosika, who urged stakeholders in the nation’s health sector to adopt more technological innovations for Nigerians to access quality skincare.
Based on the premise of the theme of the conference titled: “Promoting Skin Health: The Multifaceted Approach’’; Awosika said that a new way of delivering healthcare services could be achieved through adoption of technological innovation into the system. “There has been a rush, mostly by young Nigerian entrepreneurs to introduce ground-breaking technology and new ideas into the healthcare space. “This is the main reason skin doctors need to introduce new ways of treating people on skincare. “Innovations such as ‘Idokita’ and various smart phone apps and software have been created to bridge the information and service gaps or create new opportunities. “Nowhere in Nigeria is there a greater need for innovative technology-based thinking than the healthcare space,’’ Awosika said.
The expert said that there were factors driving skin health such as exponential awareness about skincare, bulging youth population, growing numbers of women in urban areas. “Other factors include competitive desire to look good and personal care, prosperous adults seeking anti-wrinkle products, and awareness about skin lesions leading to demand for diagnosis and treatment,” he said.
Awosika said that there was a compelling need for interprofessional collaboration in healthcare going with the shortage of dermatologists in the nation’s health system. “Nigeria has less than 100 registered dermatologists as at July 2018 and about 10 per cent to 15 per cent are domiciled in the Lagos area. “Also, there are now about six cosmetology clinics in Lagos area that may or may not be linked to dermatology,’’ the medical practitioner said. He said that interpersonal collaboration had been identified as a promising means of achieving the dual objectives of strengthening the healthcare system and improving health outcomes.
In her remarks, Dr Titilayo Gonclaves, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Health, Lagos State, said it was pertinent that people promote good skin healthcare. Gonclaves said that promoting good skin could be achieved through consuming healthy diets, protection from sun, avoiding smoking, managing stress and avoiding chemical creams. “This conference is very apt with the varying degrees of skin disorders persistent in our environment due to unhealthy diets and use of skin lightening and enhancing products. “Some skin disorders are inherited; some may be due to health disorders, while some are acquired based on usage of harmful products. “People should know that the skin is the largest organ of the body which reveals the overall health of an individual. “It means promoting good skin health, as healthy skin not only appeals to one aesthetically, but also informs of the state of health of one’s internal organs,’’ she said.
Dr Grace Okudo, the President, Nigerian Association of Dermatologists, said that promoting good skin health required sound medical knowledge of the skin by all health practitioners, and not just dermatologists. Okudo said that was why the association trained some health professionals who were not dermatologists like nurses, pharmacists, clinical psychologists among others. “The idea is to form a critical mass on skin healthcare delivery because dermatologists are very few in the country. “Training more health professionals will help us to educate the public, especially at the grassroots level, on skin health and how best to take care of it. “People should use sunscreen to protect their skin instead of bleaching cream; good nutrition and regular exercise will also give good skin. “We have already started making plans to curtail all the unqualified cosmetology clinics in the country,’’ Okudo said.