By Abiodun Lawal, Abeokuta
Ogun State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Babatunde Ipaye, on Thursday called for the domestication of the National Health Act to further strengthen the state’s healthcare delivery system.
Ipaye made the call while playing host to members of the state House of Assembly Committee on Health, who were on oversight visit to the ministry in Abeokuta.
“Domesticating the National Health Act will create a pool of funds that will be expended on the state government’s health policies and programmes. Also, the step will help complement the existing Community Health Insurance Scheme which has been delivering qualitative and affordable healthcare to the people of the state. We are optimistic that the all-encompassing act will assist in turning around the fortunes of the sector at all levels of government,’’ the commissioner said.
Ipaye said the act provides for a basic healthcare provision fund.
According to him, it will provide one per cent of Consolidated Revenue Fund to be disbursed for the advancement of national healthcare services at the primary, secondary and tertiary level.
He said that the act also provides for funding from the Federal Government with counterpart funding from state and local governments for the implementation of basic minimum healthcare package for the people.
On the ministry’s achievements, the commissioner said that it had, in collaboration with its developmental partners, distributed equipment to 52 maternity centres across all local government areas in the state.
He said that a machinery had been set in motion to redesign the operation of the ministry and other related agencies to further improve healthcare services to the residents of the state.
“The ministry has clamped down on about 256 illegal health facilities and revalidated 356 licences through medical auditing of maternity and pharmaceutical centres across the state,’’ Ipaye said.
The commissioner appealed for speedy passage of the Health Insurance Bill, already before the state House of Assembly.
In his remarks, Mr Israel Jolaosho, the House Committee Chairman, commended the ministry for providing qualitative and efficient healthcare services through effective coordination of all health programmes.
The lawmaker tasked the ministry to improve on its public-private-partnership programmes to complement government’s efforts on the development of facilities and equipment at the various health centres.