By Hassan Zaggi
The Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo, has charged experts in the pharmaceutical industry to develop a National Strategic Plan for the pharmaceutical sector that will guaranty self-sufficiency and security in the nation’s medicines need.
He gave the charge to the participants at the National Institute for Pharmaceutical Research and Development’s (NIPRD) Health Engagement Education Access Discourse, in Abuja, yesterday.
The NIPRD discourse was with the theme: Developing a robust and comprehensive Policy to catalyse Pharma industrial Development: Setting the Agenda for the Next Level.
Represented by the Permanent Secretary in the Federal Ministry of Health, Mr. Abdullaziz Mashi Abdullahi, the Vice President further charged the experts to “focus on expanding the local content value of the nation’s pharmaceutical sector for national economic growth and prosperity through strategic innovations to achieve the unmet targets of National Drug Policy (NDP) and address new challenges in the health sector.”
He applauded NIPRD for organising the discourse, which, according to him, was timely and coming at the right time the President Buhari-led federal government has taken several steps towards achieving Universal Health Coverage (UHC).
Osinbajo, therefore, assured that the Federal Government will continue to support NIPRD’s efforts towards attaining its vision and mission.
Responding to questions from The AUTHORITY, the Director General of NIPRD, Dr. Peter Obi Adigwe, disclosed that the discourse was part of his Institutes intervention to ensure the fulfillment of the its mandate of “collecting data, collating data, analysing the data and disseminating it and the evidence that is gotten from the analysis to ensure that when research is carried out, Nigerians actually feel the impact of the research.”
On what impact the discourse will have on ordinary Nigerians, the NIPRD Director General said that it will bring dramatic improvement to the health care status of Nigerians and also improve the socio economic indices of the country.
“It is important for the common man because if you have a vibrant pharmaceutical sector, there will be better access to medicines, there will be more jobs, more knowledge transfer because the sector will be more bigger and better developed and revenue generation will improve because we can export more products and earn revenue,” he said.