By Olasunkanmi Akoni
Governor Babatunde Fashola of Lagos State has said the decision of the state government to put together the Mini Health Mission was informed by the need to revitalise the primary health care delivery system as well as alleviate poverty among the people at the grassroots level.
Fashola who spoke in Lagos yesterday at the launch of the ongoing Free Health Mission in Badagry Local Government, Badagry West and Olorunda Local Council Development Areas added that the Mini Health Mission was also meant to take immense pressure off the various secondary health facilities in the state.
The governor who spoke through his Special Adviser on Housing, Mr. Jimoh Ajao, said the state government had drawn up relevant high level local and international policy documents, strategic initiatives, interventions and policies to guide the state Ministry of Healthâ€™s operations to enable Lagos residents to enjoy unfettered access to qualitative health care in line with its vision, mission and thrust.
He said the basis for governmentâ€™s sustained investments in the health sector as a public good was borne out of the global recognition of the fact that good health is a potent determinant of economic growth and development, adding that the health status of a population remains a fairly accurate proxy measure of her economic strength.
The governor noted that his administration has been privileged to have the benefit of an enduring health sector legacy pioneered in the Ten Point Agenda, the Health Sector Reform Law and the various progressive health policies of the previous administration stressing that the vision of the stateâ€™s health sector is geared towards the attainment of excellence in health service delivery by applying best practices at all levels of care.
Fashola stressed that the delivery of qualitative, affordable and equitable healthcare services to the citizenry through the application of appropriate technology by highly motivated staff has always been the driving force of his government.
He noted that all Primary Health Care Centres (PHCs) in the various local governments and local council development areas had been fully equipped hence he urged the people to take full advantage of the PHCs by availing themselves of the use of the facilities provided at the PHC nearest to them.
His words: â€œAs first port of call in the treatment chain, a revitalized Primary Health Care Centre (PHC) will effectively serve to reduce pressure on the available general hospitals as only illnesses that exceed their capacity will be referred to the nearest General Hospital or tertiary health centres for further treatment.â€
The governor, however admonished the people to also take advantage of the state governmentâ€™s Free Hypertension and Diabetes Programme as well as the Free Screening for Cancer Programmes adding that early detention of any of such disease would go a long way in ensuring the survival of affected people.