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Revolutionary health sector plan in the works

Stories by Sola Ogundipe
JUST before thedissolution of the Federal Executive Council last week by Acting President GoodlucK Jonathan, erstwhile Minister of Health, Prof. Babatunde Osotimehin announced a new National Plan for the nation’s health sector which he described as a revolutionary initiative that is bound to engender the required changes in the nation’s health system.

Osotimehin who spoke at the opening of the 53rd National Council on Health (NCH) meeting in Asaba, Delata State, said there was the need to embark on the development of a new approach to health management due to challenges in the health sector.

He noted that the cost of the plan to Nigerians is N4,650 or US$31 which is the per capita cost of implementing the new National Strategic Health Development Plan (NSHDP). This figure, it was gathered, is comparable and indeed lower than the figure of US$35 recommended by the World health Organisation (WHO) on Macro Economics and Health for a package of basic and essential health care and thus assures that our plan is indeed realistic and responsive.”

Osotimehin later identified impediments to an effective national health care delivery system to include mutual accountability, lack of coordination, lack of integration in service delivery, Not learning from examples of Best Practices from other settings and focusing only on operational level to the detriment of Health System Issues.

Theme of this year’s NCH meeting tagged: “Working together to improve our health in Nigeria: One Nation One Health System, One Plan ,and One Monitoring and Evaluation Framework”, was an indication of government’s commitment to change the way of management of the health care system and delivery services from one with little or no synergy at all levels, to one where there is shared vision, mission, goals, objectives and targets.


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