How financial gap, community transmission, others hinder TB elimination in Nigeria – Experts 

How financial gap, community transmission, others hinder TB elimination in Nigeria – Experts 

  • Say childhood TB on increase

  • Call for online data platform 

  • Minister pledges to explore more funding avenues 

Health Minister, Dr. Osagie Ehanire with the ED, Stop TB Partnership, Geneva, Dr. Lucica Dittu during the visit.

For Nigeria to end tuberculosis, TB, the country must take care of huge financial gaps which are hampering the fight among other challenges.

This was revealed when a team, High-Level Mission on Domestic Resource Mobilization to end TB in Nigeria, met with the Minister of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire.

Speaking on behalf of the team, the Executive Director, Stop TB Partnership Geneva, Dr. Lucica Dittu, while recognizing Nigeria’s strides in the fight against TB in the last two years, noted that huge financial gap has remained one of the top challenges in Nigeria.

According to her, Improvement in diagnostics through priority funding of state governments, the increase of DR-TB infection becoming a community transmission issue were among the reasons tuberculosis still exists in the country.

Disclosing more challenges, she said: “Childhood TB is on the increase. There’s low treatment outcomes, the need to have more TB representatives on the CCM and the need for Nigeria to have an online live data platform where the progress can be centrally monitored.”

Dittu also offered the support of Stop TB Partnership in any way deemed fit. She shared the experience from other countries, especially about the loan from the World Bank to increase resources for TB.

Also, the Acting Board Chair of Stop TB Partnership Nigeria,  Dr. Queen Ogbuji, emphasized that changing the narrative of financial funding will require commitment and joint effort by parliamentarians, Minister of Finance as well as the Ministry of Health. She called on the government to make office accommodation a priority so that the funding from the Global Fund will be reserved exclusively for programmatic use. 

In his response, the Minister of health acknowledged that TB needed more support. 

He made a commitment to collaborate with the Ministry of Finance, the parliament and also the secretary to the Government of the Federation to address the situation. He said he will explore all avenues to see how more resources can be mobilized for the fight against TB. 

The Honourable Minister also commended Stop TB Partnership and announced that the ministry had also started partnership with the private sector to improve TB testing in the country.

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