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PHC system to receive commitment from NGF

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By Mercy Kelani

PHC would help Nigeria attain the UHC to 80% of the country’s population.

At the official inauguration of the Primary Health Care (PHC) Leadership Challenge that was held on August 17, 2022, at the State House Banquet Hall, Abuja, the Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire, revealed that the President, His Excellency Muhammadu Buhari, has authorized the establishment of three more orthopedic hospitals across the country. He added that these orthopedic hospitals are situated, one per geo-political zone, in the North-east, the North-central, and the South-south; Benin, Jos, and Jalingo respectively.

In regards to the PHC fund, Jeremie Zoungrana, Country Director of Bill and Belinda Gates Foundation, at the meeting, stated that the PHC Challenge Fund stands out as an opportunity to encourage and publicly give recognition to ownership and leadership at the subnational level. Also, to support the NGF in building accountability at the Governor level, aid improved performance management and enable the enhancement of critical areas in PHC, the PHC health indicators would be tracked. The challenge fund will additionally boost other BMGF investments that aim at ensuring the improvement of state level data ownership, analysis, quality, and use.

FG has disbursed N471.9B to states, according to SFTAS program.

Hajia Zainab Ahmed, at the inauguration organized by the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF), affirmed that so far, an aggregate sum of N471B has been disbursed by the Federal Government of the federation in form of grant to states, as stated under the 1.5B dollars World Bank-Assisted States Fiscal Transparency Accountability and Sustainability (SFTAS) Program. It was further said that asides the benefits that was derived from the grant, every state in the federation domesticated the fiscal reforms in their public financial management system.

The Governor of Ekiti State and NGF’s Chairman, Kayode Fayemi, in his comment at the event, appreciated the commitment of governors towards the building of a resilient Primary Health Care System. The Primary Health Care (PHC), according to him, focuses at addressing the bottlenecks in the system, as it strives to ensure a strongly built Public Health care system. In his words, NGF have convened a roundtable for November 12 and 13, 2022, in Seattle, USA, to discuss the development agenda of the states’ government regarding immunization, PHC, and human capital development.

PHC will expand the attainment of UHC to 80% population.

The PHC Challenge fund, being the culmination of the Seattle Declaration which rephrases the commitments of the NGF towards strengthening leadership and accountability for the PHC system, at the state level, proves that PHC is capable of expanding the attainment of Universal Health Coverage to about 80 percent of the Nigerian population. Also, polio eradication, although already done in the past, will likely be done again to strengthen primary health care system, with experience from the COVID-19 pandemic.

The chairman of the NGF said that the NGF assert its commitment in strengthening the primary health care system across the country, following the induction to the Seattle Declaration by the governors of the 36 Nigerian states in November 2019. The declaration includes the improvement of the governance of the primary health care system as a sub national level, through the full implementation of the primary health care under one roof policy; the provision of sound leadership for primary health care through frequent engagement with relevant stakeholders; and quarterly PHC performance review at meetings of the State Executive Council meetings.

NGF would promote a progressive increase in PHC funding.

The declaration also entails the recruitment of essential health workforce to guarantee that all PHC systems have the minimum staffing requirements suitable for their level, in accordance with the state’s minimum service package; promoting progressive increase in PHC funding while ensuring efficient budget in alignment with annual operational plans; ensuring there is a mechanism for the provision of better health care, fund implementation, and oversight at the state and facility levels; and instituting a Culture of use of evidence for decision making.


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