Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo says the federal government cannot adequately provide health care services for the entire Nigerian population.
Osinbajo said this on Tuesday at the national health dialogue organised by Premium Times in Abuja on Monday.
Represented by Nicolas Audiferren, his chief physician, Osinbajo said an effective national health insurance scheme may be the best option for the development of the nation’s health sector.
“It has become obvious that the government, both at the state and federal levels, cannot adequately provide health care services. That’s the simple truth,” he said.
“Our view is that an effective national health insurance scheme remains the best option for the development of our sector and for efficient health care services in this country.”
He said the government is dedicated to attaining universal health coverage (UHC) for all Nigerians.
Reeling out some achievements of the government, he said: “We were able to allocate 1% of the consolidated revenue fund towards the funding of key health initiative in compliance with National Health act.
“Last year we also launched the patients’ bill of right, initiated renovations and improve funding for primary health care institutions. We have been able to eradicate polio.” He said
Dapo Olorunyomi, publisher of Premium Times newspaper and organizer of the event, said the conference was put together “to bring to the table experts, policymakers, stakeholders and the ordinary citizens to discuss thorny issues that matter to advance better healthcare delivery.”
Chiedo Nwankwo, a medical doctor who spoke at the event said: “Nigeria is one of the worst places for maternal, newborn childcare in the world”
Advocating for the poor, Nwankwo said: “they should not spend the little they have and get impoverished in their quest for quality health care”
She urged state and non-state actors to do more in order to improve healthcare
Muhammad Dogo, former NHIS chairman, said “Nigeria is already offtrack” in terms of achieving universal health care (UHC) by 2030.
He lamented the issue of health not having a strong constitutional backing in the country.
However, Dogo said that proper deployment of resources would help the country achieve UHC by 2030