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Kogi Government on Tuesday says it has released N91 million counterpart funds for implementation of all health intervention programmes to facilitate partners’ activities in the state.
Gov. Yahaya Bello disclosed this in Lokoja at the inauguration of second round of Maternal, Newborn & Child Health Week (MNCHW), free healthcare services for women and children between six and 59 years.
Bello, who was represented by Mrs Folashade Ayoade, Secretary to the State Government (SSG), reiterated his commitment to ensure considerable reduction in maternal, newborn and child mortality rate in the state.
He also promised to accomplish all the set targets of the New Direction Blueprint for the health sector by improving working environment, workers’ salaries and introduction of welfare packages.
“I want to state categorically that the state government has paid up to N91 million this year alone to facilitate partners’ support activities in the state.
“We have developed a robust plan for health sector as captured in 2018 Budget proposal with lots of health intervention programmes and infrastructural development.
“Today, we are also unveiling the ongoing distribution of basic medical equipment and essential drugs to 236 Primary Healthcare Centres across the state,” Bello said.
The governor called for the collaborative efforts of all the local government administrators, traditional and religious leaders, parents, women groups and health workers, to ensure successful implementation of the programmes.
The Commissioner for Health, Dr Saka Haruna, said the MNCHW was a low cost, high impact strategy designed to reduce deaths from preventable causes through some health intervention measures.
The commissioner commended the governor for demonstrating the political and financial commitments to the health sector.
He said that the governor has continued to shower unwavering support to the state ministry of health which has helped the sector to soar to greater heights in spite of the economic hardships being faced across the federation.
“This, among other bold strides eventually led to Kogi being among the 12 states that qualified for the second round of disbursements under Saving One Million Lives (SOML) programme of the Federal Ministry of Health.
“For weeks we have been busy distributing basic medical equipment and essential drugs to at least one health facility per ward which has re-strengthen our Primary Health Centres (PHCs) to render life saving services.
“We will live no stone unturned in ensuring that quality and affordable healthcare services are brought to the doorsteps of our people,” Haruna said.
Dr Ahmed Attah, Special Adviser to the governor on Health Matters, said, the state government had prioritised health sector more than all previous governments in the state.
“What we are seeing now in health sector in Kogi is the outcome of years of planing by the governor, translating into actions and activities through a vibrant commissioner,” Attah said.
Mr Kennedy Adejoh, the State Coordinator of World Health Organisations (WHO), commended the state government for creating the enabling environment for the programme to thrive.
He assured the governor of the WHO continous support to the people of the state to reach out to all the wards for effective reduction of maternal and child mortality and morbidity rate.
Mr Bolarinwa Ogundusi, the state Nutrition Officer/MNCHW Focal Person, said MNCHW stemmed from the need to boost coverage of high impact interventions for mother, newborn and child survival.
He said 1, 387, 808 children had received vitamin A supplement in the state this year. In the last round of MNCHW in July, 736, 713 children were supplemented which translates to 97 per cent of eligible children in Kogi.
“The intervention for this round includes vitamin A supplementation; immunisations; focus antenatal care; health education; HIV testing/counseling; family planning services, among others.
“This round of MNCHW shall be done for 10 days, to make sure that all eligible mothers, children and men are reached,” Ogundusi said.
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