The efforts of Governor Idris Wada rebuilding decayed infrastructures in the health sector of the State goes to show the importance the administration places on the health of the people.
Health is undoubtedly every human’s most prized treasure. It is a key to the future and sustainer to the present. That is why Hippocrates, the father of medicine, once said, “A wise man should consider that health is the greatest of human blessings, and learn how by his own thought to derive benefit from his illnesses”.
But important as health is, it’s not automatic given; it sometimes needs to be carefully cultivated and actively nourished.
The best institutions equipped to ensure this are governments.
Governments are especially crucial to health care delivery in poverty stricken corners of the world where health care bills have been implicated in the economical dis- affiliation of large swaths of people.
This is the context under which the Captain Idris Wada’s admirable health care policies need to be judged and appreciated.
Health they say is wealth. Little wonder that the flagship of the Wada administration in the area of health is the free medical care programme, a personal initiative of the Governor.
Under the programme, which was carried out in conjunction with Cedio medical outreach, a team of medical experts visit every nook and cranny of the State to give free treatment to the sick.
In 2013 for example, 115,000 people were treated freely. This number does not include the surgeries,eye treatment and other intervention contained in the rural program. The state government’s rural health program home and abroad has been adjudged as superlative an initiative.
The commencement of the flag-off and introduction of pentavalent vaccine by the Wada administration has greatly assisted in the fight to eradicate polio in the State. Routine immunizations among other primary health care activities of the Wada administration has remained unrivaled. The state remains polio free since 2010 and has won laurels for its consistency.
At present, all existing health facilities in the state are being strengthened through standard equipment purchase even as new general and cottage hospitals are being constructed across the State. The state presently has four zonal hospitals.
There is also presently a massive renovation and rehabilitation of General Hospitals across the State. This is also accompanied with the purchase of standard hospital equipments to enable them carry out primary and secondary function of meeting the health needs of the people.
The on-going construction of Kogi State Diagnostic and Imaging Centre Lokoja, and the on-going massive equipping of the centre at Lokoja, which when completed would assist greatly in the diagnosis of ailments by medical practitioners, re-enforces the importance the present administration attaches to the health needs of the people.
Mention must also be made about the rehabilitation of the State Central Medical Stores Lokoja. This is aimed at making our health institutions constantly in supply of drugs and stocked with essential drugs on a revolving basis .
The upgrade in the infrastructures going on at all the State School of Midwifery, alongside the government’s support for the accreditation of courses in those institutions to enable them award ND and HND certificates has greatly received the State government attention. Similarly, the school of Medicine at the State University Ayingba is now operational while the University Teaching Hospital is under construction. All of these are bold initiatives that words are been matched with action to better reposition the health sector in the state.
Blood the say is life, little wonder the efforts the present administration has put in place in ensuring that the National Blood Transfusion Service Centre has been renovated and serviced with inverter Batteries and other power supply sources in Lokoja. This gesture of the present administration shows the governor’s passion for saving lives with a functional blood bank service.
The massive employment of a large pool of Medical and Health Personnel made up of Doctors, Nurses and other Paramedics, into the health sector of the State is Captain Wada’s avowed commitment to the well being and good health care of the people.
Captain Wada’s policy of also distributing long lasting insecticidal mosquito nets across the State, is another major interventions of the administration aimed at tackling malaria, an increasingly endemic disease in tropical Africa.
Furthermore,the administration’s prompt payment of all its counterpart funds for HIV/AIDS related activities and in other enhanced health care delivery counterpart services signed by the State,shows the recognition the present administration in the State attaches towards ensuring that its citizenry are healthy and not sickness ridden.
Health workers in the State when compared with their peers in other states are no doubt properly renumerated. They are also inspired through the prompt payment of their allowances as well as the sustained payment of CONMESS/CONHESS salary structure.
There has also been a deliberate emphasis on capacity building for health care givers in the State, as well as the free distribution of child health cards, which are some government’s measures aimed at improving the lives of its people under the health sector. This efforts of the Capt Idris Wada led administration has no doubt remained unparalleled in the state’s history.
The State’s rating as it concerns reduction in infant and maternal mortality which is about the least in the geopolitical zone is an indication that Government’s efforts is yielding fruitful result.
For a government that is not resting on its oars as regards the health needs of its people, it is only hoped that the next few years, the still noticed lapses that is in need of government’s attention would certainly get the desired improvement.
For now, the present administration, under the leadership of Captain Idris Wada has made the health of Kogi people through improving and rebuilding infrastructures, the most prized possession.
This certainly, is what is expected from a responsible and people-oriented government.
Micheal Abu is the Chief Press Secretary to Kogi State Deputy Governor.