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Police consider psychiatric screening of officers

Police consider psychiatric screening of officers
January 12
22:08 2016
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Solomon Arase, inspector-general of police, says the force is considering conducting psychiatric test on recruits and serving officers.

Arase said this at the Nigeria police force health policy revalidation meeting in Abuja on Tuesday.

He said the initiative became necessary following incidents of indiscriminate use of firearms by personnel of the force.

Arase said inadequate manpower had exposed officers to working for longer hours.

He said the force was also considering establishing a trauma centre for its officers because of the nature of their job.

“The police should be concerned about the mental health of officers,” he said.

Arase had earlier advised divisional police officers (DPOs) to always determine the mental awareness of officers before assigning firearms to them in order to curtail incidents of “accidental discharge”.

He said inadequate health workers, poor funding, infrastructure deficit and management deficiencies had been some of the challenges inhibiting the force’s medical unit.

Arase added that in order to tackle these challenges, it was expedient to develop a health policy for the force.

“The development of any policy document entails an inclusive approach with relevant stakeholders,” he said.

“You all have been invited here today to review the Draft Health Policy for the Nigeria Police Force.”

On his part, Isaac Adewole, minister of health, promised the ministry’s assistance in the implementation of the policy.

“We will assist in the implementation, we will ensure it happens,” he said.

He commended the police management for developing a health policy for its officers and their families.

In a remark, Abdulmumini Ibrahim, registrar, Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria (MDCN), said the policy was long overdue.

He said the council would help the police to build the capacity to handle the facility.

The Nigeria Police Medical Service was established in 1975 with the primary mandate of providing health care services to serving, retired, family members of the force and detainees.

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