The Primary Health Care Under One Roof (PHCUOR) State Advocacy Team (SAT) in Niger State is a coalition of Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) led by Global Promoters for Community Initiatives that is focused on improvement of Primary Health Care (PHC) services in the State.
This coalition received a support from MamaYe Nigeria with fund from PAI Advocay USA to implement a PHCUOR intervention advocacy project in the State. This coalition has worked with relevant stakeholders and advocated for a Costed Minimum Service Package (MSP). The State Primary Health Care Development Agency (SPHCDA) and the State Ministry of Health have done justice to the development of MSP for the state. It should be noted that the draft MSP as a document supposed to be endorse by the Governing Board of SPHCDA.
We, the members of Niger State Advocacy Team on PHCUOR intervention want to use this opportunity to congratulate the Executive Governor of Niger State, H.E. Alhaji Abubakar Sani Bello for the bolder step he took late last year on the declaration of State of Emergency on Health sector. The declaration has brought about tremendous achievements on health sector in the state. To mention a few, the Governor commissioned a standard PHC at Beji town of Bosso LGA and another one at Fuka in Munya LGA. The government has also started the distributions of hospital equipments to 274 PHCs across the state. This government has also recently signed a MoU with Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (MBGF) to strengthen the quality of health service delivery at PHC levels in the state. The N1.26 billion MoU will be used for PHCs facility upgrade on equipment and recruitment of health personnel across the state.
We should also recall that, shortly after the incumbent government came to power; all the Boards and Agencies of government were dissolved. The dissolution of the agency boards without exception affected SPHCDA Board, which has left the agency not having a Governing Board for the past two years and half. As mentioned above, on 3rd of November 2016, The Governor of Niger State, H.E. Alhaji Abubakar Sani Bello declared the state of emergency on health sector because of decaying status of health sector in the state we all expected that the SPHCDA Board would be the first point of call to be constituted and inaugurated by the governor.
The act that established the SPHCDA stated it clearly stated that a Statutory Board would govern the agency. The Governing Board shall oversee the affairs of the agency, which is intended to provide political will power for the agency to carry out its activities and provide quality of service delivery to the people of Niger State.
The core function of the agency is to coordinate the activities of the Primary Health Care centers in the state. They also have the mandate to provide monitoring and supportive supervision to PHCs in the state. The PHCUOR, which is an international best practice, allows the SPHCDA to control the general management and administration of all PHCs in the state. Nevertheless, in Niger State reverse is the case. The survey conducted in early 2015 on Primary Health Care Under One Roof (PHCUOR) recorded that Niger State scored 88% in Governance and Ownership which if such survey is conducted as we speak the state will score 0% because of the lack of governance structure that is not properly put in place. The score for the MSP was 11% in 2015 with other pillars that scored averagely. The relevance of the Governing Board when constituted will improve deliverables expected from agency.
This coalition has observed that, the agency not having a statutory governing board is long overdue and that is not good for the state.
We hereby call on the state Governor, Abubakar Sani Bello should act as a matter of urgency and constitute the Governing Board of Niger State PHCDA.
On this note, we call on the state government to expedite action on the appointment and inauguration of Primary Health Care Development Agency Governing Board for effective coordination, control and monitoring of Primary Health Care programmes and activities.
The State Governor has took a bolder step to ensure that good people of Niger State receive quality health care at the PHCs across the state should also put relevance governance structures in place to monitor and supervise the billons that are being expended on such projects. The Agency Board when inaugurated, it will enhance the ownership and sustainability of the projects put in place. It will provide institutional strengthening for the agency. The Board activities will have positive impact on improving the health index of the state. It will ensure quality of health care provision across the PHCs in the state. The MSP in draft copy would receive the endorsement of the state government and it will be used as an advocacy tool to mobilized fund for improved standard of services at PHCs in the state. Finally, the government will achieve more and the people will benefit better.
This coalition believed that acceptance and implementation of the above recommendations would help to achieve the desired goal of effective Primary Health Care Development Agency as well as effective health care service delivery in the state.
The Niger State citizens appreciate the government for all the laudable implementation of people’s oriented project especially in the health sector. We also recognize the immediate past Honorable Commissioner for Health for his contributions to the health sector of the state economy and to the Executive Governor for delivering on his promises of transforming the state health sector. It has thus visible on his efforts geared towards the revitalizing the health sector.
Long live PHCUOR (SAT)
Long live Niger State.
Long live Nigeria
Thank you and God bless.
Global Promoters for Community Initiatives/PHCUOR SAT