The House of Reps on Wednesday, October 9, raised alarm over the state of the healthcare sector in Nigeria.
To this effect the House of Reps called for the upward of the health sector budget from the present 5% to 15%.
The resolution followed a motion of urgent public importance moved by Ntufam Eta Mbora.
In his motion, Mbora said that the 1983 coup carried out by General Muhammadu Buhari was predicated on the deplorable state of the health sector, but the sector is still in deplorable condition.
“The reasons adduced for December 31, 1983, military coup were that Nigeria’s economy had been mismanaged.
“The country had become indebted and the health sector was in shambles as hospitals had been reduced to mere consulting clinics without drugs, water and health equipment to function optimally.
“35 years after, including 19 years of democratic rule, investigations carried out across the country revealed that not much has changed in the nation’s public health sector. Most public health centres are in deplorable states of being ill-equipped, understaffed and underfunded.”
He also said that the people are losing faith in the sector, also faulting the NHIS scheme.
“Nigerians are losing faith in the public health sector as most Government facilities are in bad shape and emergency units are barely equipped to respond to critical situations, thus causing privileged Nigerians to seek treatment outside the country.
“The decay in the nation’s health sector calls for a re-evaluation of the annual budgetary allocation to the sector, which is barely sufficient for adequate provision of medical facilities and maintenance,” he said.
Mbora also expressed “regrets that the deplorable state of the health sector is a clear indication that the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) has not been faithfully implemented, given that the 1% basic health care provision fund from the Consolidated Revenue Fund ought to have brought about a significantly improved health sector, including manpower development.
“Despite public outcry, the menace still prevails as 40 per cent of medical doctors in Nigeria are still jobless despite the call on the Federal Government by the Nigeria Medical Association to employ capable medical personnel to reduce mortality rates in the country.”
To ensure compliance with the resolution, the House of Reps mandated Committees on Health Institutions and Health Care Services to ensure compliance.