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 Table of Contents  
Year : 2021  |  Volume : 30  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 120-121

Time for the longitudinal or routine study of critical indicators of early-career doctors in Nigeria

1 Department of Medicine, University College Hospital, Ibadan, Oyo State, Nigeria
2 Department of Orthopaedics and Trauma, Delta State University Teaching Hospital, Oghara, Delta State, Nigeria

Date of Submission15-Oct-2020
Date of Decision25-Oct-2020
Date of Acceptance30-Oct-2020
Date of Web Publication15-Feb-2021

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Oladimeji Adebayo
Department of Medicine, University College Hospital, Ibadan
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/NJM.NJM_188_20

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How to cite this article:
Adebayo O, Uyilawa O. Time for the longitudinal or routine study of critical indicators of early-career doctors in Nigeria. Niger J Med 2021;30:120-1

How to cite this URL:
Adebayo O, Uyilawa O. Time for the longitudinal or routine study of critical indicators of early-career doctors in Nigeria. Niger J Med [serial online] 2021 [cited 2021 Mar 4];30:120-1. Available from: http://www.njmonline.org/text.asp?2021/30/1/120/309511

In the last 2 years, the Challenges of Residency Training and Early Career Doctors in Nigeria (CHARTING) study developed and generated critical outputs on various themes relevant to early-career doctors (ECDs), who are essentially postgraduate doctors in residency training, medical and dental interns, and doctors below the rank of principal medical officer or equivalent.[1],[2] The key findings span demographics, workplace issues and psychosocial themes.[1]

Although the study was not designed to be a longitudinal study of ECDs' challenges or issues related to residency training in Nigeria, it was a cross-sectional study identifying and profiling the various themes and subthemes. The CHARTING study, however, demonstrated the enormous gender disparity among the ECDs, which highlighted contemporary issues of poor representation of women in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics disciplines and gender equity in the health system.[3] It also showed that about 4 out of 5 ECDs graduated from medical school in the last ten years, which is a key profile of the demography of ECDs in Nigeria.[3],[4] There is also the burden of psychosocial issues, such as the high burden of impaired quality of life and burnout.[5] There was also an issue of heavy work burden[6] and a high tendency for migration among them, with serious implications for Nigeria meeting her already low workforce adequacy in the health system.[4],[7],[8]

While these issues are revealing in a one-time cross-sectional survey, they would probably provide more insight when there is regular data acquisition with the attendant exploration of the data to generate useful information on ECDs and the trends and relevant outcomes in Nigeria. These outputs would serve as the barometer on crucial issues affecting ECDs in Nigeria and the necessary information to guide relevant policies and guidelines related to this category of workers. We recommend either a longitudinal study to provide insight into the interplay of the relevant themes or a routine collection of relevant variables to observe the trends. The former as the Whitehall model, which examines key variables among British civil servants or like a miniature global burden of disease, which is an annual update on health that allows for a comparison of trends.[9],[10] Evaluating the trends of these indicators is a necessary input into short-, intermediate-, and long-term plans in enhancing the quality and quantity of ECDs in the country. It would be interesting to understand how psychosocial issues such as burnout, stress, and quality of life interplay with workplace activities among ECDs while also understanding how profiles change year on year.

The following critical subthemes from the CHARTING study's Phases I and II are recommended in the next vista in the research of key trends and variables of ECDs in Nigeria: demography, burnout, stress, practice satisfaction, and perception of workplace equipment and facilities. Additional information in the health and well-being of ECDs. This surveillance may be annual or biennial but should be regular and elicit relevant information, while the longitudinal design maybe over the lifespan of the cohort engagement as ECDs. In all, they should address the current and potential challenges of ECDs.

Towing this line creates awareness of challenges facing ECDs continuously and serves as advocacy tools. The benefit of robust data for planning is not left out. Ultimately, this would help influence better policy on human resources as related to ECDs through the strategic use of better data and information, which would emanate from such routine endeavors.

In conclusion, the time has come for the routine longitudinal acquisition of data on the relevant indicators of ECDs in Nigeria.

Financial support and sponsorship

Funding support via NARD for Research & Statistics Committee (RSC)/Research Collaboration Network (RCN) of NARD.

Conflicts of interest

The first author is the Principal Investigator of the CHARTING Study while the Second author is the President of NARD (2020/2021).

  References Top

Kanmodi K, Ekundayo O, Adebayo O, Efuntoye O, Ogunsuji O, Ibiyo M, et al. Challenges of Residency Training and Early Career Doctors in Nigeria Study (CHARTING STUDY): A Protocol Paper. Niger J Med 2019;28:198-205.  Back to cited text no. 1
  [Full text]  
Adebayo O, Oluwaseyi O, Olaopa O, Kpuduwei S, Oluwafemi E, Omotayo FF, et al. Trainees collaboratively investigating early career doctors' themes: A NARD initiative in Nigeria. Niger J Med 2019;28:93-7.  Back to cited text no. 2
  [Full text]  
Onuwabuchi E, Omololu A, Grillo E, Ekundayo O, Adeniyi M, Ogunsuji O, et al. The demographic profile of nigerian early career doctors. YMJ 2019;2:1-4.  Back to cited text no. 3
Adebayo O, Ogbonna V, Igbokwe MC, Ebuka NV, Eze U, Uwadiako EU, et al. Challenges of Residency Training and Early Career Doctors in Nigeria (CHARTING) study Abuja. Nigeria: Nigerian Association of Resident Doctors (NARD); 2020.  Back to cited text no. 4
Adebayo O, Kanmodi K, Olaopa O, Fagbule OF, Adufe I, Adebayo AM, et al. Strategies for mitigating burnout among early career doctors in Nigeria: Lessons learnt from the qualitative CHARTING study. Glob Psychiatry 2020;3:97-103.  Back to cited text no. 5
Ogunsuji O, Adebayo O, Olaopa O, Amoo A, Igbokwe M, Babalola R, et al. Evaluating the relationship between duty hours and quality of life of Nigerian early career doctors. Hosp Top 2020;98:118-26.  Back to cited text no. 6
Adebayo O, Labiran A, Emerenini CF, Omoruyi L. Health Workforce for 2016–2030: Will Nigeria have enough. JIHR 2016;4:9-16.  Back to cited text no. 7
Efuntoye O, Adebayo O, Ogunsuji O, Olaopa O, Oiwoh S, Ekundayo O, et al. N004 Profile of Tendency to Emigration among Early-Career Doctors (ECDs) in Nigeria: Preliminary Report from CHARTING study. In 39th Annual General Meeting of National Association of Resident Doctors of Nigeria (eds.). Kaduna: National Association of Resident Doctors of Nigeria; 2019.  Back to cited text no. 8
Lopez AD, Mathers CD, Ezzati M, Jamison DT, Murray CJ, editors. Global burden of disease and risk factors. The World Bank, 2006.  Back to cited text no. 9
Smith GD, Shipley MJ, Rose G. Intermittent claudication, heart disease risk factors, and mortality. The Whitehall Study. Circulation 1990;82:1925-31.  Back to cited text no. 10


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