The Federal Government of Nigeria has reiterated its commitment towards bringing the desired positive changes to Nigeria’s healthcare system through the achievement of Universal Health Coverage.
The Minister of Health, Prof. Isaac Adewole, affirmed the government’s position while speaking at the opening ceremony of the 59th National Council on Health in Umuahia, Abia State.
Prof. Adewole noted that the Buhari administration had resolved to change the health indices of the county through the provision of basic healthcare facilities to the poor, vulnerable and people living in rural areas, who need care the most.
“We are focusing on the people in the rural areas and the vulnerable population in our society such as women and children under five years of age and elderly,” he said.
The Minister urged stakeholders and Development Partners to align their support towards the vision of the government in ensuring access and affordability of care to the deprived.
Adewole said: “I wish to implore all stakeholders that the present administration was committed to revamping the Nigerian Health system by making the Primary Healthcare (PHC) a fulcrum.
“I will like to advice all development partners to support this initiative and reprioritize their support to our current vision.
“We do not want duplication of efforts and wastage of resources.”
The Minister also appealed to state governors to invest more in the health sector.
He said: “I want to appeal to the state governments to invest in health and make it one of their deliverables in their domain.
“I believe we can deliver and get to our desired destination of Universal Health Coverage in no distant time if we can be more committed, resilient, focused and steadfast on this health agenda mission.”
Speaking on Emergency Response, the Minister of State for Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire, said that Nigeria is faced with reoccurring natural and man-made disasters, including mass causality of road accident, flooding, disease outbreak, chemical contamination and population displacement in communal clashes, which consequently leads to loss of lives and property.
Ehanire therefore urged state governments to partner with relevant agencies to provide timely response, with ambulance equipped with First Aid Box for First Aid treatment to the victims.
Declaring the event opened, the Governor of Abia State, Dr. Okezie Ikepeazu, thanked the Ministers, Commissioners for Health and the delegates for converging on Umuahia to discuss salient issues expected to improve health sector.
Dr. Ikpeazu disclosed that the Abia State Government is committed to provide quality healthcare services for the people.
He said the state has aligned with the One-PHC-Per-Ward policy of the Federal Government, noting that his administration has gained better understanding of the vision of the ministry.
The governor promised to provide ambulances that will be attached to Primary Health Centres mainly for conveying referral patients to General Hospitals.