FG will infuse N50 billion to primary healthcare to improve accessibility- Pate

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By Blessing Bature 

Coordinating Minister of Health and Social Welfare, Prof. Muhammad Ali Pate has said that the  Federal Government of Nigeria as parts of its steps to address health deficits in the country will be releasing N50 billion as the first tranche of the Basic Healthcare Fund, a significant increase from N25 billion allocated in 2022. 

Pate said this during a press conference in the nation’s capital, Abuja that this infusion of funds will breathe new life into our primary healthcare facilities, and ensure that quality care is accessible to all citizens.

According to him, the Federal Government has made substantial strides in expanding health insurance coverage. Recognizing the fact that financial barriers often deter individuals from seeking medical care, and therefore have worked tirelessly to increase the accessibility and affordability of health insurance schemes. 

“By supporting enrollment initiatives and streamlining administrative processes, we have extended coverage to millions of Nigerians, safeguarding them against the financial hardships associated with healthcare expenses. Since the beginning of this administration, we have enrolled about 750,000 more Nigerians in health insurance and we remain committed to providing access to quality health for all Nigerians through the Vulnerable Group Fund and the Basic Health Care Provision Fund BHCPF, he  said.

He alluded that the ministry’s commitment to immunization has yielded remarkable results in protecting our population from vaccine-preventable diseases. Through robust vaccination campaigns and outreach programs, the ministry has achieved significant strides in sustaining immunization coverage nationwide, safeguarding our communities, particularly our children, from devastating diseases.

” Notably, our swift response to the diphtheria outbreak underscored our commitment to proactive disease control measures, swiftly containing the spread and saving countless lives. Since the inception of diphtheria response, over 5 million children have been immunized with the Penta vaccine and 10 million children with Td vaccines.

Revealing the  ongoing efforts of the ministry in combating the threat of Lassa fever, he said comprehensive measures has been taken by the Federal Government to enhance response capabilities and safeguard the health of Nigerians. 

“To strengthen our response to Lassa fever outbreaks, the Federal Government has embarked on the distribution of essential response commodities to states and treatment centers across the nation especially in affected states. These include Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs), Ribavirin (injection and tablets), body bags, thermometers, hypochlorite hand sanitizers, and Information, Education, and Communication (IEC) materials. By ensuring the availability of these critical resources, we aim to equip healthcare workers and facilities with the necessary tools to effectively manage and contain outbreaks.”

He therefore gave the assurances of the ministry to collaborate with stakeholders at all levels to achieve our shared vision of a thriving healthcare system for all.