Kuni Tyessi, Abuja
Health Sector Reform Coalition (HSRC), a collaboration of civil society organisations under the health sector has revealed that all health institutions in the country have been operating illegally due to failure to comply with the provisions of section 12 and 13 of the National Health Act.
The poor health indices which are partially due to poor funding of the health sector has produced 37 per cent of malnourished children, 43.6 per cent under-five who suffer from stunted growth, and a total health expenditure per capita which is $217 compared to a total health expenditure of $2,475 in the best performing country in sub-Saharan Africa.
For accountability and transparency, the coalition has also insisted that the Basic Health Care Provision Fund(BHCPF) which is part of the consolidated revenue fund, be domiciled at the Central Bank of Nigeria and should be disbursed only when the provisions in the Act are complied with.
The Board Chairman of the coalition, Dr. Ben Anyene made this revelation in Abuja recently, stating that Nigerians need to know and understand that 50 per cent and 20 per cent of the N55.1 billion which was included as the basic healthcare package for the year 2018 are expected to provide basic minimum service package of health services to citizens as well as provide essential drugs, vaccines and consumables.
“15 per cent is expected to be used for the provision and maintenance of facilities, equipment and transport for eligible primary healthcare facilities; 10 per cent is for the development of human resources for PHCs and five per cent for emergency medical treatment to be administered by the committee appointed by the National Council on Health.
“It is worth noting that all health establishments in the country are operating illegally as none has complied with the provisions of section 12 (classification of health establishments) and section 13 (certificate of standards).
“The coalition strongly believes that the N55.1 billion in the 2018 federal budget will contribute to solving the intractable and chaotic healthcare delivery systems in Nigeria.
“Any other action outside the provisions of the National Health Act 2014 will be illegal and counter-productive. We insist that the consolidated revenue should be domiciled at the CBN and only disbursed when the provisions in the Act are complied with.”