Fred Ezeh, Abuja

The Registrar, Medical Laboratory Science Council of Nigeria (MLSCN), Tosan Erahbor, on Monday, said that no fewer than 20 medical laboratories have been shut down in 10 states in past one year.

The action, the Registrar said, was part of routine regulatory checks on practicing laboratory scientists, to ensure that set standards are maintained.

Erahbor told Journalists at a press conference in Abuja, to mark the 50th anniversary of the Council, that it has strengthened its monitoring system to ensure that standard are regularly maintained in the profession.

He equally neutralized the fear that increased interest of foreign trained laboratory scientists in Nigeria’s health system was a threat to locally trained practitioners.

He explained that the Council has designed a workable plan that had strengthened the credibility of its systems resulting in wide acceptance of the outcome of its qualifying exams being conducted for foreign trained laboratory scientists.

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He said, “We have so far conducted the qualifying exam for three consecutive times and we have recorded over 60 percent success. Nobody has also questioned the outcome or feel cheated because we promote transparency and give equal opportunity to every candidate.

“We have three training institutions across Nigeria, Benin, Jos and Ibadan. Enlisted foreign trained laboratory scientists are kept in these training centers for seven months.

“The essence was to get them acquainted with the peculiarities in Nigeria. Because some of them might have been trained in countries that has no malaria or other parasites in Nigeria. The training is ended with mock exam and qualifying exam.

“For the sake of credibility, exam questions don’t get to examiners until few minutes to the commencement of the exam. It is then printed and distributed. Answers are supplied at the end of the exam for marking. These have proven to more credible and transparent.”