Nigerian Orthopaedic Association Communique at its 39th Annual General Meeting and Scientific Conference
The Nigerian Orthopaedic Association (NOA) held its 39th Annual General Meeting and Scientific Conference (AGM/SC) on the 24th & 25th November 2016 at the international conference centre, Abuja. This was preceded by a pre-conference workshop on primary and revision knee replacement Surgeries sponsored by Zimmer Biomet between the 21st and 23rd November 2016 at the Transcorp Hilton Hotel, Abuja. Eighty (80) Orthopaedic Surgeons attended the pre-conference workshop. 
 
The theme of the Conference was "Subspecialisation in orthopaedic surgery: The way forward, delivered by Prof Aham Onyike of the Howard University Hospital, Washington DC USA and the subtheme "Trauma care in Nigeria" delivered by Professor Babatunde Solagberu of the Lagos State University College of Medicine. 
 
There was a record breaking attendance of more than 200 Orthopaedic Surgeons practicing both within and outside Nigeria. 
Over 40 orthopaedic papers were presented. There was also a practice management symposium on orthopaedic healthcare financing, practice organisation with a returnee's perspective on subspecialisation handled by representatives of the International Finance Corporation, major private and public orthopaedic hospitals as well as erudite scholars respectively. 
 
About 25 companies from a cross section of partner agencies both local and outside Nigeria, such as implant companies, drug companies, hospitals and a representative of the Arab Spine Association exhibited their products at the AGM/SC. 
 
At the Annual General Meeting on the 25th November the association held her business meeting to discuss many issues of importance to the welfare of her members, growth of the association and orthopaedic practice in Nigeria. The association also inducted Seventeen (17) fellows as new active members into her fold at the Dinner which was held to mark the end ofAGM. 
 
Observations: 
• The security situation in the North-eastern axis of Nigeria has continued to improve. 
 
Resolutions: 
• The association notes that Subspecialisation is key in advancing the quality of care in Orthopaedic practice in Nigeria. 
• Trauma is a leading cause of death in Nigeria because of the poor state of the roads and vehicular conditions worsened by bad drivers and economic recession. 
• Private Orthopaedic sector and few public orthopaedic hospitals have made some progress in the standard of Orthopaedic care in Nigeria. This is capable of arresting overseas medical tourism as virtually all orthopaedic procedures no matter how sophiscated they are can now be performed locally. 
• The Arab Spine Society is willing to partner with the Nigerian Orthopaedic Association, 
• A Separate Faculty of Orthopaedics is yet to be established at the West African College of Surgeons. 
• Advanced Trauma Life Support (ATLS) is a very important 
• Government should encourage subspecialisation in orthopaedics and improvement in services in our country by providing funds and avenue for further and regular training. 
• Government should improve healthcare delivery in the country and access to health insurance as the cost of care of Orthopaedic and trauma cases is huge for out of pocket expenditure. 
• A national treatment guidelines for various orthopaedic disease should be established. 
• There is a need to establish a National Institute of Orthopaedics by the Government to improve on our developing by our industries to manufacture our orthopaedic consumables locally. 
• There should be a better interface between orthopaedic institutions and various funding agencies as it is a technology driven field with extremely sophiscated equipment with huge costs. 
• There is a need to establish various subspecialty registries, which would improve our records, research and ultimately lead to the development of equipment specific to Nigerian needs. 
• We need to partner with the Arab Spine Association and other international societies with similar aims and objectives like our association. 
• There is a needto pursue the establishment of a Faculty of Orthopaedics at the WestAfrican College of Surgeons. 
• The association would like government to enforce the certification of all doctors working in our emergency rooms with skills in Advanced Trauma Life Support (AILS) to reduce mortalities from trauma. 
• The Association commends the effort of two (2) of her members Dr. T.M Dabkana and Lt. Col. (Dr.) N.S Onuchukwu for their untiring role in providing specialist healthcare to citizens of North-eastern Nigeria in the face of insurgency and insecurity. 
 
Acknowledement: 
The honourable Minister of Health; Prof. 1.F Adewole as well as the Minister of state for Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire who attended our program; former Minister of Health Prof. Onyebuchi Chukwu, Medical Directors of all National Orthopaedic Hospitals, Chief Executive Officer of EMZOR pharmaceuticals, Mrs Stella Okoli as well as Dr Umar Abubakar Apeshi, a First Class traditional ruler (The Osoho) of Olosoho in Obi LGA of Nasarawa State who was the Royal Father of the program and various captains of industries. 
 
Conclusion: 
The 2016 NOA AGM was a huge success, next year's AGM/SC will be hosted atAsaba, Delta state in November 2017.
 
Prof, Mike Ogirima President 
Dr. Kunle Olawepo 

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