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Appraising Commercial Expenditure Efficiency of General Medical Education and Residency Programmes in Nigeria

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Document pages: 31 pages

Abstract: Purpose: The purpose of the research is to establish the standard period taken in full recovery of cost outlays, rate of returns for general physicians and marginal returns to consultants, and appropriate profitability indices. Mixed ex-post “facto” data and primary data-sets pertaining medical education expenditure across levels and lifecycle career earnings of Nigerian physicians in public service were employed. The longitudinal secondary and primary data-set were obtained from cohorts of physicians that participated in the two stages of medical education, published programmes charges posted in brochures of some public universities’ medical schools and gazette consolidated medical salaries scheme of scale for medical workers in the public service. Method of Analysis: Break-even analysis was applied to determine minimum number of years required to fully invested capital; “elaborate (full cash flows) discounting” with internal rate of return method was used for calculation of the private and marginal rate of returns. Then, profitability ratio approach was applied to determine the level of viability of medical education across levels. Cost construction indicates that about N30 million and N69.5 million are committed as investments on general medical education and residency training of the licensed general physicians and consultant-physicians respectively. The lifecycle career earnings estimates of the general practice physicians and consultant-physicians employed in the public service worth N356 million and 814 million. Results: The break-even period for full recovery of investments in general practice physicians is 5.25 around the thirteenth years of medical education and 6.33 years for residency-trained consultants, occurring in the 21st period of this layer of vocational training respectively. Individual rate of returns on investments in general medical education of average licensed general physicians is 32 percent and 32 percent marginal rate of returns to additional investment expenditures on residency training (earnings premium of consultant-physicians). This combined rate of returns of consultant-doctors (general medicine plus residency training) is 64 percent. Net present value of cash-flows of the average general physician and consultant-doctors in Nigeria is worth N326 million and N744 million respectively. Whilst the profitability index derived from the present value of net cash-flows is 1.32 for general physicians and 1.69 for the specialist. Conclusion: The paper concludes that investments to medical education in Nigeria are worth-while; but more rewarding for residency training. Timing of education (age-range when doctors get certified) influences the earnings and rate returns to investments and value of one’s intellectual capital and net-worth (statistical financial value of life). Contribution to Knowledge: The results of assessment of individual’s expenditure efficiency in medical higher education confirm that investment in medical education is worthwhile. The findings enhance rational decision for individuals, private sector and government organizations respectively and veritable information for policy formulation. Originality: This research is an exploratory assessment of individual participants’ spending efficiency in medical education in Nigeria and other developing country establishes tentative pay-back period of such investments, unit rates of returns across levels and profitability indices.

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