Mon. Jul 15th, 2024

Fear Grips Kaduna Residents As Government Privatises Hospital Services

Gov. Nasir El-Rufai, Executive Governor of Kaduna State, Nigeria.

By Iliya Kure

Nasir-El-Rufai2Kaduna (Nigeria) — Some residents of Kaduna are expressing concern over decision of the State Government to privatise services in public hospitals, which they fear will create difficulty in accessing health care services, especially to the ordinary person.

The State Government had already advertised in the dailies, calling on interested parties to tender bids for providing such services in the hospitals.

Services to be outsourced include laboratory services, mortuary services, radiology services and pharmaceutical services. Once privatised, provision of such services will be taken over by private businesses.

A resident, Aliyu Ibrahim said, hospital services is one aspect government is not suppose to privatise for its impact on the lives of citizens, especially pregnant women and children, who are being encouraged to patronise the hospitals.

“If up to now our women have not imbibed the culture of going to hospitals for antenatal clinic and hospital delivery, I do not see any wisdom in privatising these services, because this will certainly make the services expensive and discourage more people from going to the hospital.

“The same state government introduced free services for pregnant women and children, which covered drugs and lab services, the same state is privatising these services, it means something is wrong with the present crop of leaders.” He said

Talking with AFRICA PRIME NEWS on the development, Binta Samaila, a mother of four said “I was shocked when I read the advertisement on the newspapers, I fear that many husbands will have more reasons to ask their wives to deliver at home. It is rather unfortunate, government that is suppose to be at the forefront of subsidising services and encouraging hospital deliveries is now the one privatising same.

“What is the government trying to do other than discouraging women from hospital deliveries?” She said

A resident, Ephraim Igeh said “I am not totally against paying for services. But what government ought to have done is to introduce fees on the services and allow its skilled workforce to do the work, instead of bringing outsiders to provide such services.”

A market trader, Bello Garba said “the common man is always the loser when it comes to privatisation.

Government would always tell you that everything is done for the good of the common people, but it is not always so. Now tell me, which common man would benefit from this. It means, hospital services would be out of reach of the common man.

It is however not clear whether Kaduna State Government would discontinue the free medical services meant for pregnant women and children under five years, which it introduced in 2007.

Last month, the Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria (PSN) has warned State Governments in the country to shelve the idea of privatising hospital pharmacies, saying “drugs should not and must not be commercialised beyond a reasonable limit.”

In a statement by its National President, Ahmed Yakasai, PSN said that it believed strongly that drugs remain the pivot upon which credible healthcare revolves and therefore should not be privatised. The society instead suggested the adoption of drug revolving fund schemes to meet the medicine needs of government clinics and hospitals.

The society said past attempts by some State Governments and Federal Health Institutions to commercialise/privatise pharmacy facilities “ended in predictable doom” because the private profiteers utilised government goodwill to attract credit supplies from pharmaceutical companies.

“These huge credits were never paid for, forcing government to inevitably inherit debts from the profiteers and threats of being blacklisted by the companies”, it said.

Related Post

3 thoughts on “Fear Grips Kaduna Residents As Government Privatises Hospital Services”
  1. What is the essence of governance? It is to provide basics of life like roads, electricity, security of lives and properties, education, good health care for its citizens. Anything less than these is a failed system

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *