By Hassan Zaggi
The current effort by the Federal Government to revitalize 10,000 Primary Health Centres (PHCs) across the country is the right step towards attaining Universal Health Coverage (UHC), the World Health Organisation (WHO) has said.
The Health System Adviser for WHO, Moses Ongom, stated this while responding to questions from journalists at walk to mark the World Health Day in Abuja.
This is even as the WHO Country Representative in Nigeria, Dr. Wondi Alemu, has advised Nigerians to imbibe the culture of preventive medicine and not wait until they fall sick before they seek for medical attention.
He reiterated that: “When we talk about UHC, we should also talk about the quality of service that has to be improved, that is why the revitalisation of the existing resources is very important so that people can have access to improved services wherever they live.
“UHC is also about preventive medicine. You don’t have to wait till you are sick before receiving treatment; we place too much emphasis on treatment.
“It involves living healthy and maintaining healthy lifestyles due to various health services being rendered.”
Speaking further on the strategies put in place by the federal government, Moses Ongom, the Health System Adviser for WHO, said that Nigeria has set an agenda for UHC through PHC revitalization and the introduction of key legal and policy frameworks to fasten the realistion of the PHC revitalization.
According to the him: “The NHA 2014 establish the Basic Health Care Provision Fund (BHCPF) which is expected to provide resources that will enable the PHC revitalization take place.
“50 per cent of such resources are envisage to finance services through the NHIS and probably, at the state level, we have the state health insurance scheme, so that 50 of this money will be used to purchase primary healthcare services, 45 per cent of this money is expected to enable PHC services to be revitalized and rehabilitating facilities, ensuring that there are medicines, ensuring that the health workers are motivated, ensuring that there is acceptable quality of services at the PHC points.