News The African Way

Nigeria: Stakeholders Seek Quick Implementation of National Health Act Provisions

By Mohammad Ibrahim

Kaduna (Nigeria) – A Nigerian Non-Governmental Organisation, Maternal and Child Health Civil Society (MCH-CS) Partnership has called for the timely release of guidelines that will lead to effective implementation of the National Health Act.

An official of the Partnership, Benjamin Maigari who made the call was speaking at a Civil Society-Media Forum, organised by Development Communication Network DEVCOMS in Kaduna, Northwest Nigeria.

He described the guidelines as the sure roadmap needed by relevant stakeholders to understand their scope and limits, as well as what is expected of them in the implementation of the law.

He applauded Nigeria for coming up with the Act, saying the country will through it demonstrate its seriousness and love for ‘women of child bearing age’ and address health concerns, especially at the Primary Health Care level.

He said Civil Society Organisations in Nigeria are willing to engage and support government towards implementation of the Act for the good of the citizens.

Addressing participants, Director Public Health in the Kaduna State Ministry of Health, Dr Ado Zakari Mohammed said the Act was aimed at strengthening health delivery system in Nigeria, by identifying dedicated source of funding and defining roles for all stakeholders in the health sector.

“We thank God the government has assented the National Health Act, what remains now is for its proper implementation at all levels in the country for quality service delivery,” he said.

The Director also urged Nigerians to restore confidence in public health facilities, especially in Kaduna State as plans are on to strengthen supervision and other oversight functions.

Dr. Ado decried attitude of public health workers which has sent many citizens away from patronising the facilities, saying “a research has shown that 60 percent of Nigerians have lost confidence in public Health service delivery.”

Dr Ado who added that Nigeria is yet to reduce its high maternal mortality ratio, urged CSOs to educate citizens on the need to patronise health facilities for antenatal care and childbirth deliveries.

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