Professor Adebola Olufunmilayo Ogunbiyi, a professor of medicine at the University of Ibadan, made the call while delivering the institution’s 492nd inaugural lecture on Thursday.
The lecture titled “External Protector and Revealer of Internal Maladies:Organs of Beauty and Shame” emphasized the need for the government to pay attention to training more skin care experts, noting that the presence of quacks and self medication has been on the increase lately.
Ogunbiyi noted that there are about 100 trained dermatologists in the country, which she describes as “grossly inadequate” to meet the needs of a growing population of over 150 million.
She explained that ” the misconception that skin diseases do not require priority funding because they are associated with low mortality compared to other organ dysfunction should be repudiated.
They have a greater impact on an individual’s quality of life, when compared to disorders believed to have higher mortalities. Skin disorders are stigmatizing, humbling and could easily lead to death”
Describing the skin as the mirror of the body, she established that nothing goes on in the body system without reflecting on the skin. This is why individuals must pay attention to the skin.
The skin expert also called on government to invest in facilities and equipment such as laser machines, phototherapy chambers etc that will ensure Nigerians will stop going abroad for medical tourism.
Speaking to journalist after the event, the Chief Medical Director of the University College Hospital, Ibadan emphasized the need for government to invest largely in the health sector especially in the training of health workers and provision of the required equipment for working and good working condition for health workers.
This, he said will dissuade our health workers from going outside of the country in search of better opportunities.