By Segun Awofadeji in Bauchi
To upscale demand in family planning services and also make clinic environment friendly and attractive, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation funded project, The Challenge Initiative (TCI), in collaboration with the Bauchi State Primary Health Care Development Agency (BSPHCDA) has renovated and equipped five primary health care centres in Bauchi metropolis and environs.
The renovation of the facilities, done under one of the components of TCI, tagged “72 Hours Makeover”, was commissioned in an effort to make the clinics more inviting for clients to seek family planning services in the state.
Speaking on behalf of both the Portfolio Director in Nigeria, Dr. Mojisola Odeku, and Director, TCI Nigeria, Dr. Victor Igharo, at the commissioning Thursday, the Bauchi State Programme Coordinator of TCI, Mrs. Rabi Ekele, said the ongoing exercise of TCI has targeted 25 family planning clinics for the makeover in five local governments of the state.
She said: “The 72 Hours Makeover is carried out in high volume facilities and it starts by close of work on Fridays with repairs, renovations and installations of equipment and by Monday morning the clinic reopens.
“The makeover component is to make the clinic more attractive and client friendly for women to seek family planning services.”
While commending the state government for allocating a budget line for family planning, Ekele also appealed for the release of the counterpart funding by the state that is required to fast-track the implementation of TCI programmes, stressing that: “We are confident that these resources, when released, will contribute significantly to the advancement of the health and wellbeing of the good people of Bauchi State.”
In her remarks during the commissioning and handing over of the clinics, the wife of the governor, Hajiya Hadiza Abubakar, commended TCI and called on members of the community to patronise the clinics and improve on their health status.
Also speaking, the Executive Secretary, Bauchi State Primary Health Care Development Agency, Mr. Adamu Gamawa, said TCI’s support to the agency is very commended and highly appreciated.
THISDAY reports that TCI is being implemented by the Johns Hopkins Centre for Communication Programmes with funding from The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation with the goal of increasing the capability of state governments to provide life-saving reproductive health, child birth spacing information and services to families and communities especially among the urban poor.
The five clinics that were renovated and equipped are Yelwa Domicillary, Police Clinic, Town Maternity, Nassarawa Jahun and Wuntin Dada.