In line with Governor Godwin Obaseki’s pledge to domesticate the National Health Act (NHAct) in his efforts to improve health care delivery in Edo State, the State Ministry of Health, in partnership with the Health Reform Foundation of Nigeria (HERFON) has organized a workshop for stakeholders and influencers towards the implementation of the Act.
Addressing participants which also included heads and representatives of religious organizations and representatives of the associations and councils of medical practitioners in the state, the Honorable Commissioner for Health Prof. Obehi Akoria, said the domestication of NHAct, a part of the State’s health reforms, will provide legal support for the many initiatives being introduced to develop the State’s health care delivery system.
She appreciated HERFON for its efforts and disclosed that the Ministry is working with the organization to guarantee the success of NHAct in Edo State since it is the responsibility of the Government to create legislation that permits safe health practices.
Prof. Akoria further said that Governor Obaseki is aware of the public’s health wishes and desires and has developed strategies to systematically address them. She cited the renovation of the state’s primary healthcare facilities, which she described as the cornerstone of healthcare services, saying this has strengthened Government’s commitment in making health facilities accessible to everyone in the State.
The Commissioner urged both public and private medical practitioners in the state to unite and see themselves as an entity to support the review process and ensure a comprehensive Act that will address the urgent needs in medical practice, which will ultimately have an impact on the standard of healthcare provided to Edo residents.
She called on various medical councils and associations to bridge the divide in order to prevent people from working at cross-purposes.
“The Ministry seeks not to exclude any professional but aims at the inclusion of all stakeholders to achieve the ultimate goal of excellent medical service delivery in the state.
“The act is for the good of all. Edo is leading on many fronts in this country. The problem in the nation’s health sector can be solved by using the example of Edo state,” she further told the pareticipants.
In his address, the Program Manager of HERFON, Dr. Opeyemi Adeosun, commended the Ministry for its commitment towards raising the standards of health service delivery in the State.
He stated that HERFON uses advocacy to bring healthcare changes at the Federal and State levels, and noted that Edo was moving in the right direction, though the state’s health reforms still requires clear-cut legal backings.
Adeosun added that the domestication of NHAct is aimed at establishing legal requirements for health service delivery in the state while establishing a framework for controlling, regulating, and promoting health, positing that if the legislation is put into effect, it will redesign how standards are defined and regulated for all medical services being provided in the state.
In his remarks, Dr. Stanley Ehiarimwian, the Ministry’s Functional Permanent Secretary pleaded with stakeholders in the health sector to assist in identifying and fixing the Sectors lapses.