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Minister promises 24-hour primary healthcare


Says Nigeria far from quality UHC

Minister of Health Dr. Osagie Ehanire, has disclosed that the primary healthcare centres have been standardised to provide 24 hours service.He made the disclosure yesterday in Abuja while declaring open a two-day meeting with commissioners of health from the 36 states of the federation, organised by the Health Department of the Nigerian Governors’ Forum (NGF).

Also, he disclosed that progress was being made in the production of vaccines for Lassa fever, adding that the epidemic had affected 27 states.

The aim of the meeting is to bring onboard all commissioners of health on the Seattle Declaration and strategise on its operation, as well as enlighten them on other health priorities of the NGF. It is also to update the commissioners on the national health agenda and their roles in translating them at subnational levels.

Ehanire regretted that Nigeria had not reached the level of providing the quality of health required to meet its population.His words, “We know that our country’s health system does not yet provide the level of quality of service required to meet the population.”

Noting that the country was far from reaching the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), Ehanire added. “For instance, the maternal morality rate of 512 per 100,000 live births and under-five morality rate of 132 per 1,000 births show that we are far away from reaching the SDG.”

The minister said with the right approach, appeal as well as strategic use of data and resources, the country could achieve the SDG
He stressed that the country had the potential to become a major player in the global economy by virtue of its human and natural resources, adding that the President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration was focused on investment in human capital development.

Urging the health commissioners to make their governors understand that secondary healthcare was as important as the primary one, he added, “I thank states for the cooperation the government have received in an effort to tackle Lassa fever, which has reached about 27 states at the last count and to have ensured that the coronavirus has not entered Nigeria.”

Director-General of NGF, Asishana Okauro acknowledged the efforts of the Federal Government to revitalise primary healthcare, adding that primary healthcare remained the pillar of the healthcare system.

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