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Their Gain Africa’s Loss: How U.S., U.K., Others Benefit from Africa’s Medical Brain Drain



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As recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO), the ideal doctor-to-population ratio is 1 per 1,000 persons. But in reality, Africa can only boast of 1 per 10,000 persons, and the shortage worsens by the day. By 2035, the insufficiency is expected to reach 4.3 million physicians. Despite the huge gap, the continent has been suffering an increasing medical brain drain as its trained health workers migrate in droves to developed countries, including the U.S., U.K. and Canada.

Africa bears 23% of the global disease burden. But in contrast, it accounts for only 3 per cent of health workers. The developed countries with the lowest relative disease burden have the highest numbers of health workers, while Africa with the highest burden has a much smaller workforce.

For example, the United Kingdom, with a population of 68 million people, has over 370,000 physicians, while Nigeria, with over 211 million people, has less than 75,000 physicians, according to WHO. Despite that, the U.K. employs at least 12 Nigerian doctors every week. A 2008 report by Lancet showed that about one in 10 doctors working in the U.K. were from sub-Saharan Africa, and the figure has been increasing. For example, as of 2006, there were 2,692 Nigerian doctors in the U.K. medical workforce, and by 2018, the figure stood at 5,250.

In 2016, a former president of the Nigerian Medical Association said an estimated 8,000 Nigerian doctors were practising in the United States. A 2004 study revealed that nearly 86% of African doctors in the U.S. workforce came from only three countries, Nigeria, South Africa and Ghana, and 79 per cent of them were trained at only ten medical schools. Apart from physicians, other U.S. healthcare fields also consist of high percentages of Africans. For instance, 24% of its registered nurses, 20 per cent of nursing assistants, and 16% of personal care aides are from Africa.

Canada also has a history of increasing its health workforce with African-trained professionals. As of 2001, 17 per cent of physicians in the province of Saskatchewan bagged their first degree in South Africa. A decade later, the total number of foreign-trained doctors in Canada rose to 22 per cent, with Africa being the biggest source. Other countries, including Saudi Arabia, Australia,  and the UAE, have sustained their relatively high physician-to-population ratio by employing medical graduates from African countries.

The driving force behind the mass emigration is the quest for greener pastures, as many health workers struggle to cope with the working condition at home. “I left Nigeria because I wanted to earn more money, learn new things and practise in a better environment,” a Nigerian physician working in the U.S. said in an interview. Low pay, poor infrastructure, paucity of job opportunities, and fear of a bleak future for their children are some of the core identified reasons for the mass exodus.

This perennial challenge has both medical and financial implications. Despite having just 16 per cent, Africa accounts for less than 1% of total global healthcare expenditures. And looking at it in per capita terms, the rest of the world spends ten times more on healthcare than Africa. The severe funding disparity tells hugely on both its medical personnel and facilities.

On average, a surgeon in New Jersey, United States, earns $216,000 annually, while their counterparts in Zambia earn $24,000, and Kenyan physicians make on average $6,000 per annum. There are 0.3 hospital beds per 1,000 people in Ethiopia compared to Germany with 8.0 per the same number of people. There have been various cases ofZimbabwean doctors operating with bare hands due to a lack of gloves. At the peak of the coronavirus pandemic in 2020, the Central African Republic, a country of about 5 million people, had only three ventilators. And for Nigeria to meet its medical infrastructure gap, it needs an $82 billion investment in healthcare real estate and about 386,000 beds to reach the global average of 2.7 beds per 1,000 persons.

All these ills explain why more African health professionals move in droves out of the continent. Not only do they migrate to those countries, they usually see out their active service years and retire there. Being high-value immigrants in their countries of destination, they easily acquire permanent residence, such as the Indefinite Leave to Remain in the U.K., the Employment-Based Green Card in the USA, and later acquire citizenship by naturalisation. This indicates that once they fly out, there is no hope of Africa ever benefitting from their expertise anymore.

Monetary wise, many developed economies save hundreds of thousands to millions of dollars from the brain drain while Africa bears the financial losses. A 2011 study on nine sub-Saharan African countries (Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Nigeria, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe) showed that governments spent between $21,000 to $58,7000 to subsidise a doctor’s education.

Therefore, losing thousands of trained physicians to other nations after graduation puts each of these African countries in a huge financial loss. The overall loss of return was estimated to be billions of dollars, and the United Kingdom was reported to be the highest beneficiary with $2.7 billion, followed by the United States with $846 million.

In 2010, the World Health Assembly adopted a code of practice on the international recruitment of health professionals, which recommends that wealthy countries should lend financial assistance to source countries facing a shortage of healthcare workers. That same year, the U.S., through its Medical Education Partnership Initiative (MEPI),invested $130 million to support medical schools in 12 sub-Saharan countries. While such initiatives may offer a little economic relief, they will not completely solve the ills associated with the shortage, especially as many African countries grapple with high rates of preventable disease and child maternal mortality. The continent needs its trained experts to tackle this barrage of health challenges.

Many publications have questioned the motive behind Africa’s brain drain by wealthy countries and wondered if that should be viewed as a crime. However, since the recruitment is a mutual agreement between the countries and the health workers, it may be wrong to accuse the beneficiary countries of any wrongdoings. The 2010 World Health Assembly Code also attempted to stem the flow of talent migration, but it has not really been successful, as more African health workers daily queue to join their colleagues in the developed world.

This leaves Africa with no choice but to develop its health care sector and make it attractive to its medical personnel. If provided with a world-class working environment and remuneration at home, less African-trained doctors would consider emigration. The onus is on African leaders to show the required political will to curb the brain drain. This will lessen the health challenges in the continent and improve the overall wellbeing of their citizens.

Olusegun Akinfenwa is a political correspondent for Immigration News, a news organisation affiliated with Immigration Advice Service. IAS is a leading U.K. immigration law firm that helps people migrate and settle in the U.K.


People & Lifestyle

DStv For Business Enhancing Customers’ Experience with The Right Mix of Entertainment




At the heart of any business is the customer and at DStv Ghana, the goal is to evolve daily to meet the demands of the ever-changing and competitive market. In a bid to cater to its wide array of audiences, Africa’s number one Pay TV company, MultiChoice Africa has repositioned its commercial service “DStv For Business” with packages specially curated with the right edutainment content to suit various businesses.

According to the Acting Head, DStv For Business, Kelvin Kamasa, “our objective is to deliver a pay TV experience designed for your business. The content and packages are specifically curated to seamlessly fit into the way commercial customers consume it. Our solution for hotels for instance allows guest in different rooms to watch their choice of channels without the intervention of the front desk personnel. Your clientele can continue watching their favourite shows/channels whenever they are on the road for business or stop by your office, hotel, or pub. DStv For Business has a tailored package to suit your business size and pocket so you can have the best working moments with DStv.”

MultiChoice Ghana continues to improve its service offerings over time, with the addition of consultancy service for High-rise buildings, multiple user dwelling on how DStv can be installed. The DStv For Business unit can advise on countless options to ensure the incorporation of either our IPTV service or other alternatives to a seamless and cost-effective TV entertainment solution to your high rise or estate project. According to the Managing Director, MultiChoice Ghana, Alex Okyere, the business is all about the customer’s experience, and the greatest motivation for his team is to offer more value for money to not just our domestic users but commercial users.

DStv For Business has three main offers; DStv Work, DStv Play and DStv Stay. Each package is tailored to suit the needs of offices, bars, clubs, restaurants, hotels and so on. The essence of this, Kelvin Kamasa explains, is to tailor content to specific customers to enhance their viewing experience. Instead of having to watch a wide array of content, these DStv For Business packages now give you what you want based on business customers’ needs and preferences.

The DStv Work package offers the latest news headlines from around the world, sports, weather updates and other work-related entertainment. The goal here is to set the tone for a stimulating work environment and keep everyone well informed. The Work packages are best suited for offices, banks, and other corporate organizations.

The DStv Play packages are best suited for businesses such as pubs, restaurants, bars, clubs, café, and betting houses. These packages enhance the guest’s experience and ensure that they are always entertained with their favourite sports programmes and other first-class entertainment.

The DStv Stay packages are suited for hotels, motels, lodges, resorts, Air BnB’s and serviced apartments. Giving each guest whether a kid, adult or elderly a memorable in-room experience during their stay.

One important feature is that these packages they can be tailored to customers’ budget. This means that customers can enjoy entertainment at a certain threshold which is a unique offer. For less than Ghs 170, one can enjoy several channels. For instance, the DStv Stay (Basic), offers customers an array of entertainment with more than ten channels spanning sports, news, kiddies’ channel, and music with just GHs77.

Businesses also have the flexibility of choosing a package that perfectly suits your business model without worrying about not having the popular channels needed by customers. From small entrepreneurs to 5-star hotels, multinational corporations and government agencies, every business has something that works for them.

For hotels, their customers get a mix of carefully selected movies, music, and sports channels as well as documentary channels. This is the same for a financial establishment where customers are more concerned about the latest updates from the financial sector and latest news over that of a music or movie channel like Akwaaba Magic Abusua and ROK Gh. Similarly,  fast-food joints, pubs and clubs will be in tune with Trace Jama, Akwaaba Magic, SuperSports channels over National Geographic Channel or News channels.

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People & Lifestyle

Fly Emirates to Dubai and enjoy a free night’s stay at Fairmont The Palm



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Ghanaian Travellers planning their next escape to Dubai and beyond who purchase an Emirates return ticket in First or Business Class can enjoy a complimentary night’s stay at one of Dubai’s most iconic hotels (more…)

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People & Lifestyle

IIPGH, AFOS Foundation and partners launch Tech Job Fair (TJF) 2023



Organisers and partners at the launch of Tech Job Fair 2023

Organisers of the annual Tech Job Fair (TJF) are geared up to give potential employees and employers yet another thrilling and exciting opportunity to recruit and be recruited into the job market after a media launch of the fair in Accra. (more…)

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People & Lifestyle

Ghana’s Nana Yaa Serwaa Sarpong honoured as Female Entrepreneur of the Year at AWELFA 2023



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Ghana’s Nana Yaa Serwaa Sarpong has been honoured for her contribution to Women and Business in Africa at the Africa Women Economic and Leadership Forum and Awards (AWELFA 2023), held in Cameroon. During the forum, Miss Sarpong spoke on the “Impact, Opportunities and Strategies for Women in Entrepreneurship under the AfCFTA”. AWELFA later presented Miss Sarpong with an award as Female Entrepreneur of the Year. (more…)

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People & Lifestyle

How to Start Playing in an Online Casino Safely



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When you’re ready to start playing in, it’s important to do so safely. Here are a few tips to follow:

  1. Make sure the casino is reputable and has a valid license.
  2. Only use trusted payment methods, such as credit cards or Paypal.
  3. Never share your personal information with the casino or anyone else.
  4. Keep your login information confidential and never let anyone else access your account.
  5. Make sure you understand the terms and conditions of the casino before you play.
  6. Play for fun, not to make money. Never gamble more than you can afford to lose.

The Risks and Rewards of New Online Casinos

When it comes to gambling, there’s no doubt that the internet has made things a lot more convenient for people all over the world. Instead of having to travel to a physical casino, players can now simply log on to their favourite online casino and enjoy all the action from the comfort of their own home.

While this has undoubtedly made gambling more accessible and enjoyable for many people, it has also led to the rise of a new breed of online casino – the so-called ‘newcomer’. These casinos are often established by relatively unknown companies and tend to offer players lower betting limits and a narrower range of games than more established brands.

So, what are the risks and rewards of playing at new online casinos? On the one hand, these casinos may be less reliable and secure than more established brands, so there is a risk that your personal information or money could be compromised. On the other hand, new casinos often offer generous bonuses and other promotions which can allow you to make some free money or get extra value for your bets.

Ultimately, whether or not you decide to play at a new online casino is up to you. However, if you do decide to take the plunge, it’s important to do your research first and make sure that you choose a reputable brand. With a little bit of care, you should be able to enjoy all the fun and excitement of online gambling without any major problems.

Benefits of Using a Good Betting Site

When it comes to gambling, there’s no doubt that the internet has made things a lot easier for people. These days, there are tons of great betting sites available online, and this means that you can enjoy all the convenience and excitement of gambling without ever having to leave your home.

But with so many different sites to choose from, it can be difficult to know which one is right for you. So what should you look for when choosing a betting site? Here are some of the key benefits of using a good betting site:

  1. Security and safety – One of the most important things to look for in a betting site is security. You want to make sure that your personal information and your money are safe and secure, and that the site has measures in place to protect you from fraud and other scams.
  2. Variety of games – A good betting site will offer a wide range of games, including slots, poker, blackjack, roulette and more. This means that you’ll always have something new to try and you’ll never get bored.
  3. Good customer service – A good betting site will have excellent customer service, with staff who are friendly and helpful and are happy to answer any questions you may have.
  4. Easy payment options – Another important thing to look for is easy payment options. The site should offer a range of payment methods such as credit card, debit card, PayPal and more. This makes it for you to deposit money and start playing right away.
  5. Bonus offers – Many betting sites offer bonus offers to their customers, such as free bets or match deposit bonuses. This can be a great way to boost your winnings and give you an edge over other players.

As you can see, there are plenty of great reasons to use a good betting site. So if you’re thinking about gambling online, be sure to choose a site that offers all of the above benefits.

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People & Lifestyle

Everton Welcomes Ghana’s Ridge City Women as Club Partner



Everton Welcomes Ghana's Ridge City Women as Club Partner

Everton is proud to announce that Ridge City has become the first women’s football club to join forces in an exciting new partnership.

The Ghanaian club, based in Accra and formed just four years ago, is the newest addition to Everton’s International Academy Affiliate Programme (EIAAP) as the Club looks to build on the huge progress made in the women’s game in recent years.

It is also the first African club to join the EIAAP programme, which aims to expand the knowledge and expertise of Everton’s player development processes to affiliated clubs across the world.

Everton aims to help expand the profile of Ridge City Football Club by facilitating and developing the women’s game in Ghana and offering a pathway for players.

The two clubs will also collaborate on player and coach development, coach education and helping Ridge City establish themselves as a foundation club for women in Ghana.

Formed in 2018, Ridge City FC has thrived following a truncated start as a professional club caused by the Covid pandemic: earning promotion to the Ghanaian Premier League in only their third season, as champions of Division One.

The club, which currently has around 30 women in its ranks, plus a burgeoning academy, has aims to facilitate the development and promotion of women’s football in Ghana.

Ridge City’s mission also includes creating career opportunities for girls and women as footballers and in the technical and managerial aspects of the game, and contributing positively to the upliftment of female football in Ghana.

Cleopatra Nsiah Nketiah, CEO of Ridge City, said: “I am super excited about the partnership. We have been looking for an opportunity like this for a long time and the most important thing for us is that women in Ghana are serious about playing football.

“I feel like our relationship with Everton will help us on that pathway and let our people know that in Ghana you can play football and that there can be a career path, perhaps even having a chance to travel to the UK and trial there.

“The environment and resources Everton can provide is a huge pull and the opportunity to have online coaching programmes to follow, and even potential visits by their coaches, is another real positive that we can tap into, to help our women feel that they are part of something bigger.

“I want to let the world know that we can see a pathway forward for Ridge City and this is a relationship we can’t wait to be a part of.”

The EIAAP initiative provides clubs at all tiers of the game with access to the finest coaching knowledge from Everton’s renowned Academy to support with growth – a level of support that sets it apart from more traditional models.

These include:

  • A holistic approach to player, coach and club development, offering technical support from Everton’s Finch Farm training complex and business and marketing support from its Royal Liver Building business headquarters
  • Weekly support from a dedicated Everton Academy coach
  • Full access to the Everton Academy curriculum

Under the EIAAP initiative, coaches from Ridge City will have access to Everton’s state-of-the-art Finch Farm complex – the home of Everton’s senior men’s, senior women’s and academy teams – for education and training.

Paddy Byrne, Everton’s International Technical Manager, plans to make a future visit to Ridge City to assist in sharing the Everton Academy curriculum and implement methods used at Finch Farm to develop both player and coaching skills.

In turn, this provides Ridge City Women with further knowledge and help grow their club to achieve their vision and objectives.

Byrne added: “We are delighted to welcome Ridge City as an inaugural women’s partner club to Everton’s International Academy Affiliate programme.

“I’m excited to work with Cleopatra and her team and help them to build on the solid foundations laid in only four years of existence.

“We feel there is plenty of opportunity for them to grow – and by sharing our values and coaching methods we will build on the affiliate programme in a new territory. 

“I am sure this will prove a fruitful partnership for both clubs, and we can’t wait to get started.”

Everton’s International Academy Affiliate Club programme, which is available to grassroots teams, professional sides, youth academies, girls’ and women’s teams, as well as colleges and universities, was launched in 2020.

The programme already has affiliates in the US, Canada, South America, Australia and Ireland.

To find out more, visit

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