‘Nigeria far from achieving Universal Health Coverage goals’
The Chief Executive Officer of Hygeia Health Maintenance Organisation (HMO) Limited, Obinnia Abajue, yesterday said Nigeria was far from achieveing the goals of Universal Health Coverage (UHC).
He argued that inadequate funding and capacity gaps in healthcare coverage for low-income earners were also hindering the fulfillment of the UHC agenda.
Abajue made these assertions at a press briefing yesterday ahead of the 2017 Healthcare Stakeholders Conference in Lagos.Speaking on Improving Healthcare Services Quality in Nigeria: Be Part of the Solution, he said the UHC, which emphasises critical public health issues and systemic approach, had remained unaddressed by stakeholders in the country, making the people vulnerable to epidemics.
He noted that the more people get closer to accessing quality healthcare, the closer the country gets to achieving the UHC, noting that it was high time the government and stakeholders provided solutions to the healthcare delivery challenges.
This, he argued, would improve the industry and enable the country to overcome medical tourism, which had adversely affected its economy.He added that the inability of people to access healthcare in the country, resulting to medical tourism was due to its high cost and lack of healthcare coverage for all Nigerians.
“The conference slated for Thursday September 7, 2017 will bring together key players in the health industry, stakeholders, government, beneficiaries of healthcare to address the health sector challenges and provide solutions.
“Minister of Health, Prof. Isaac Adewole, will give the keynote address, while the Lagos State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Olajide Idris, is to give the special address,” he stated.
Abajue lamented that the country spends millions of dollars in medical trips, saying, “If the money is invested in equipping and funding our hospitals, medical tourism will be a thing of the past and public health issues properly addressed.”