The Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Health and Social Welfare, Kachollom Daju (mni), has assured that the Federal Government is committed to building a resilient and inclusive healthcare system in Nigeria. in line with President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s Renewed Hope Agenda.
According to posts on the ministry’s X (formerly Twitter) handle on Tuesday, the Permanent Secretary and Chairman Technical Session (National Council on Health -NCH) gave this assurance in her keynote address at the Technical Session of the 64th National Council Meeting on Health (NCH). The event which takes place from 13th -17th November 2023, in Ado-Ekiti, Ekiti State, has as its theme, ‘Building A Resilient and Inclusive Healthcare System for a Healthy Nigeria’.
According to her, the meeting is significant as it offers a platform for “laying the foundation for not only changing the narrative by building resilient health systems but also re-establishing the trust of Nigerians in our health systems.”
She stated that in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, the world witnessed a profound lesson that transcends borders.
In her words, “Every nation must ensure that its healthcare system possesses the resilience to prepare for, recover from and absorb shock.
“This must be done while upholding the core functions of catering to the ongoing and acute healthcare needs of the community with particular focus on protecting the most vulnerable among us.”
“The National Council on Health, for which we have gathered here today, is the platform for robust discussions and commitment to decisive actions that will steer our health sector toward the realization of an inclusive and resilient system.”- Daju, Kachollom mni -PSH pic.twitter.com/Qua2M6457C
— Federal Ministry of Health, NIGERIA (@Fmohnigeria) November 13, 2023
Daju asserted that the meeting, in its efforts to make policies to establish an inclusive healthcare system, is poised to set structures to provide equitable access to healthcare services and deliver quality care to all individuals, regardless of their background, socio-economic status, ethnicity, gender, age or other characteristics, in order to expedite progress towards the attainment of Universal Health Coverage (UCH).
Several sub-themes were identified as critical drivers for the healthcare system. These include:
- Strengthening healthcare access and institutional governance as a panacea for the attainment of Universal Health Coverage
- Building a skilled and motivated workforce
- Harnessing evidence-based research and development for better health
- Innovative financing for a 21st-century Healthcare agenda
- Digital transformation and Health information systems.
Recognising the challenges and acknowledging the enormous potential for positive change, the Permanent Secretary enjoined all to collectively work together towards a healthier and more prosperous Nigeria.
On behalf of the Ministers, she appreciated the Ekiti State Government, development partners, state health commissioners and stakeholders, for their unwavering commitment and support to prioritising health.
Earlier in her welcome address, the Permanent Secretary, Ekiti State Ministry of Health, Olushola Gbenga Igotun stated that the health of the people determines their strength, adding that he believed the meeting would be decisive in deliberations to move the country forward.
In his remarks, the World Health Organisation (WHO) Country Representative & Head of Mission, Dr. Walter Kazadi Mulumbo, represented, by Dr. Ahmed Mohammed Khedr, Field Presence Cluster Lead, said, “it is an opportunity for WHO and other partners to make contributions and support the government in its implementation.”
He stated his expectations for NCH to leverage the strengths and opportunities of each tier of government to come up with feasible, less complex and sustainable strategies that will work for the Federal and State Governments in overcoming challenges under the Health Sector Renewal Investment Program.
He added that the framework will be implemented across all levels, from federal to state levels.