Health

FG To Revamp 9,000 Primary Healthcare Centers In Four Years

The Coordinating Minister of Health and Social Welfare, Prof. Muhammad Pate has announced the Federal Government’s decision to revamp 9,000 Primary Healthcare Centers across the country.

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Pate disclosed this on Monday, December 11, 2023, while fielding questions from Journalists at the 2023 Universal Health Coverage Policy Dialogue held in Abuja.

He said that they were leveraging the existent Basic Health Care Provision Fund (BHCPF) to expand the number of Primary Healthcare Centers across the country:

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“We are expanding to reach from 8,000 Primary Healthcare Centers to more than 17,000 over the next years in terms of channeling resources, health workforce, and commodities to ensure that they serve Nigerians.

“Tomorrow, the Federal Government and all state governments in our country will sign a Health Sector Renewal Compact along with our development partners. It’s a sector-wide program that is part of Mr. President’s agenda to improve the health and well-being of Nigerians and that Compact would see us channel resources to the front ends of our primary healthcare system. Expanding access, affordability and also holding each other accountable for achieving results that matter to Nigerians”, he said.

The Minister further explained that the
Compact would be signed as part of activities marking the Universal Health Coverage (UHC) Day, adding that UHC was a political decision which the current administration was tackling headlong:

“Achieving UHC is a political decision and with our president’s decision to prioritise the health and well-being of Nigerians, we are seeing his administration moving quite fast alongside state governments and our development partners all agreeing to do more to improve the basic health of Nigerians particularly our women, children and the vulnerable part of our population”, he said.

With respect to loss of faith in the Primary Healthcare Centers, the Minister assured that, “with the commitment of this administration, we would see steady improvement in the resources that are channeled towards primary healthcare system and we expect the states to complement the Federal Government.

“If we work hand in hand in a coordinated manner with our development partners, I believe that Nigerians will see improvement in the functionality of the Primary Healthcare Centers in their respective domains, not forgetting our hospitals that are also equally important, because the Federal Government is investing massively in the infrastructure and the equipment of the teaching hospitals in 2024”, said Pate.

Meanwhile, the Executive Director of the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA), Dr. Muyi Aina stated, “we have about 8000 Primary Healthcare Centers that are funded directly by the Federal Government through State Governments through the BHCPF, many of these facilities need more to be able to provide fully functional services. Like being open for 24 hours, state-of-the-art commodities, infrastructures, equipment, and health workers.

“What we are going to be doing over the next four years is taking them and supporting them to get to that level and in addition to that, once we have one functional facility per ward as had been the policy of the federal government, we are also going to be rapidly expanding to double the number from 8,000 to about 17,000 that are receiving this decentralised financing”.

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