AGPMPN is the largest organized private sector service contributor to the medical industry in Nigeria. During the British Colonial Administration era as far back as 1921, doctors in private medical practice in the country had started associating together in groups simply referred to as “Associations of Private Medical and Dental Practitioners” of the various town of their location.
The precursor of the modern Association started on Friday, February 9, 1968 when some prominent General Practitioners in Lagos resuscitated the Lagos chapter of the body and renamed it Association of General Medical Practitioners of Nigeria (AGMPN). The revived Association went into action promptly and within a short time established an active National Secretariat in Lagos.
It then reached out to private practitioners and existing Associations all over Nigeria which either adopted the new name or formed new branches of the AGMPN in their respective states.
On September 12 1981 the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) officially welcome the AGMPN as its private sector component and, therefore, the sole official voice representing the interest of doctors in the private sector.
In order to accommodate other doctors who are no General Practitioners but were in private practice, the name was changed to its present Association of General and Private Medical Practitioners of Nigeria (AGPMPN) on June 23 1990.
Today, the existence of AGPMPN is evident in all 36 states of the Federation and Abuja although only 29 states and Abuja currently actively partake, to varying degrees, in national events.
In addition to catering for the welfare of its members, the cardinal objective of the AGPMPN had been and still remains the encouragement of Continuing Medical Education and promotion of professional excellence amongst its members, in order to improve and sustain quality health care services to the beneficiaries. The Association further recognized the need for exchange of knowledge, skill and especially experience from day to day on the job encounter of the private practitioners.
In furtherance of this objective, the new AGPMPN in the late 1970s made its most significant historical achievement. It initiated and vigorously pursued series of activities which culminated in the establishment of an academic Faculty of General Medical Practice (FGMP) in the National Postgraduate Medical College of Nigeria (NPMCN) in the early 1980s and the West African College of Physicians (WACP) subsequently.
During the embryonic and teething stages of existence of the GMP Faculty (GMPF), the first sets of Chairmen and Secretaries of the governing Faculty Board, which directed the affairs of the faculty, were selected purely from amongst members of the AGPMPN. But unfortunately, relationship between the Faculty and the AGPMPN had, subsequently, not moved as smoothly as envisaged.
Today, however, the age-long necessity for the AGPMPN and the GMPF to work together appears at long last, to be at its zero hour of reality. This, indeed, had been the dream of the founding fathers Association, who also happened to have been founding fathers of the Faculty. As a start, the GMPF has agreed to introduce a Diploma degree programme in Family Medicine which it proposes to run in close collaboration with the AGPMPN. Hopefully, others will follow at closer intervals. This, no doubt, is a significant milestone which heralds the dawn of a new beginning for private medical practice, the medical profession and, indeed, medical services in Nigeria.