Former President of Nigerian Medical Association, Dr. Osahon Enabulele, has been sworn-in as the President of World Medical Association (WMA) which is the global body of doctor’s association from across the countries of the world.
His installation as the WMA President was part of the 2022 WMA General Assembly in Berlin, Germany. Before his installation as WMA President, Dr. Enabulele, served as the President of Commonwealth Medical Association (CMA), among several other positions.
In his inaugural address, Dr. Enabulele, called for urgent steps to invest more in the well-being, working and living conditions of Physicians and other health professionals, stressing that it will help to reduce or eliminate physical and mental burn-out of physicians, as well as the brain drain of physicians and other health professionals, especially from already underserved countries.”
Dr. Enabulele, considered his election as WMA President as an opportunity to enhance the well-being, rights and professional autonomy of physicians across the globe, and to strengthen countries’ healthcare systems through Universal Health Coverage (UHC), the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the mitigation of the effects of climate change.
He maintained that safety of physicians and other health care providers was one of the four key lessons that the world and the medical profession should learn from the COVID-19 pandemic, the other three being the need to build resilient health systems, human resources for health, and the public communication and engagement of physicians.
He suggested that in building resilient health systems, the WMA had to continue to champion the need for global solidarity in health, equitable access to vaccines and drug treatments, including their research and development, and appropriate investment in health systems.
He urged the WMA to be an untiring advocate of global public health interventions to reduce or eliminate the staggering health inequities and inequalities, across the globe.
The outgone WMA President, Dr. Heidi Stensmyren, in her valedictory speech, expressed concerns that thousands of physicians are leaving the profession early due to fear, burnout, and the often overlooked feeling of helplessness, worried that they can no longer make a difference’
Dr. Stensmyren said she was deeply concerned about the growing violence against physicians, often involving patients or relatives, and was also concerned about attacks on health care personnel in conflicts.
She said: “Healthcare is a vital part of society, and healthcare workers should be considered neutral in any conflict. Instead, we have become targets. The attacks on healthcare facilities have reached never-before-seen levels. The crimes against civilians and those who care for others are horrible. It is a global disgrace.”
UBTH CMD, Dr. Darlington Obaseki with Dr. Enabulele, at the WMA General Assembly in Berlin, Germany.