No fewer than 7,256 trained nurses in Nigeria relocated to the United Kingdom between March 2021 and March 2022, The PUNCH has learnt.
The figure is contained in information obtained from the Nursing and Midwifery Council of the United Kingdom on Thursday.
The PUNCH reports that Nigeria has continued to witness an increase in the rate of health workers migrating from the country.
According to the data, 2,796 Nigerian nurses migrated to the UK between March 2017 and March 2018 while there was an influx of 3,021 Nigerian nurses to the UK between March 2018 and March 2019.
The council noted a slight increase between March 2019 and March 2020 when a total of 3,684 Nigerian nurses migrated to the UK.
In 2020, during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, 4,310 Nigerian nurses registered with the council between March 2020 and March 2021.
However, the council witnessed the highest rate of registration in the past five years when a total of 7,256 Nigerian trained nurses registered between March 2021 and March 2022.
The council stated, “People who trained in the Philippines and India continue to represent a significant proportion of our permanent register and contribute strongly to our annual growth.
“Between 2021 and 2022, there was a significant increase in the number of people who trained in India, the Philippines and Nigeria joining the permanent register for the first time.”
So far, the data revealed that Nigeria has the third highest number of foreign trained nurses in the UK, coming after the Philippines and India.
The PUNCH reports that the National Association of Nigeria Nurses and Midwives called on the Federal Government to regulate the migration of nurses and midwives in the country, noting that it was negatively impacting the Nigeria’s health sector.
Experts in the health sector have continued to advocate better working conditions for doctors, nurses and other health workers in a bid to regulate the export of human capital.