The Civil Society in Malaria Control, Immunisation and Nutrition (ACOMIN), has urged stakeholders to scale-up and extend the National Health Insurance program to other citizens particularly the poor and most vulnerable in the society.
Mr Nathaniel Salifu, FCT coordinator for the control of Tuberculosis, made the call at a media parley on Wednesday in Abuja.
Salifu explained that the poor and vulnerable persons in the society were often less educated and unemployed, hence they are unable to pay out-of-pocket for high costs associated with treatment for frequent illnesses.
He, therefore, appealed to stakeholders, especially the government to extend the National Health insurance and ensure they are covered to improve their access to healthcare and reduce avoidable death associated with most illnesses.
“The National Health Insurance programms enjoyed by the formal sector should be extended to other citizens of Nigeria, particularly the poor and most vulnerable. The poor often are less educated and unemployed and consequently lack the ability to pay out-of-pocket for high costs associated with frequent illnesses,” he said.
Salifu added that funding for primary health delivery should be mapped out and sanctioned against any misappropriation or mismanagement, to enable a robust public health program at all levels in the local government.
While stressing the need for Community members to also actively support and advocate for their local Primary Healthcare Centers (PHCs), he said the support would enable sustainability and effectiveness of the centres.
“The ATM Networks (NEPWHAN, ACOMIN. TB Network) has worked with the National Agency for Control of AIDS (NACA) on the COVID-19 Response Mechanism Resilient and Sustainable System Health (C19RM/RSSH) Grant.The purpose of the grant is to address gaps in the health system infrastructures for sustainable, efficient and effective health outcomes, as well as to ensure that CSOs, are integrated into the healthcare response, such that all contribute their quotas. This health system strengthening programme which was being funded by the Global Fund under their C 19 response mechanism had yielded alot of results”,,he said.
On his part, Mr Samuel Simon, FCT programme officer, ACOMIN said the media meeting was to allows partners know the achievements and challenges in achieving the C19RM/RSSH centres.
“The objective of the media meeting is to get the media to add their voices to the campaign on strengthening the primary Healthcare system and infrastructure for sustainable, efficient and effective health outcome. As well as to ensure that communities and CSOs are integrated into the healthcare response such that all contributes their quota in achieving result through C19RM/RSSH Global fund project,” he said.