Gov. Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta has said that special attention should be paid to the health and education sectors to positively impact on the citizenry.
The governor made the call on Friday when the executives of the state branch of the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA), led by Dr. Francis Adedayo, paid him a courtesy visit in Asaba. According to him, the best way to impact on the poor is to improve their health and education.
“Well-educated and healthy people are confident people. Unfortunately, the indices are not right when we look at the education and health challenges we are facing as a nation.
“I thank the Federal Government for releasing the basic healthcare fund, as it ought to be and I do believe that it is a way of encouraging other state governments to provide their counterpart funds and assist the poor to have access to basic healthcare,” he said.
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Gov Okowa commended the NMA for recognizing his administration’s success stories in the health sector. “Definitely, we have done so much, but there is still a lot more to be done.
“It is gladdening that in our first tenure, we started the contributory health scheme in the state and we thank God that the civil servants and their dependents have all keyed in. We have begun to record successes.
“We hope to advance because we actually don’t want our people to pay from their pockets when their dependants fall ill.
“Health insurance packages are not targeted at some people; we need to get the foundation right; we need to start in a way we can sustain it and for now, we can only engage in only the basic healthcare package.
“We will continue to sustain what we have at the moment,” he said. Okowa congratulated the NMA for working towards the second health summit, saying that they deserved all the support they needed for them to get it right for the health sector.
Earlier, Adedayo said that they were in Asaba to intimate the governor about their plan for the second health summit of the country. “We are here to congratulate the governor for the giant strides his administration has recorded, especially with the health insurance scheme.
“We are happy for the provision of mobile field hospitals and we are here to brief him about the forthcoming second National Health Summit, as the only governor in Nigeria who is a medical doctor.
“He is the face of the National Health Summit,” Adedayo said.