By Ndidi Chukwu
The Minister of Health, Professor Isaac Adewole said the Federal Government is worried over delay in the implementation of the National Health Act 2014.
Professor Adewole described the failure to captured NHAct in the 2016 budget as a set back to health care financing in Nigeria.
The minister made the comment while welcoming participants from Kenya, Liberia, Uganda, Sierra Leone and Nigeria who participated at the just concluded Anglophone Africa Peer review workshop for sustainable immunization financing in Nigeria.
He added that the Act remains a legal mandate that the Nigerian Government must respect and act for sustainable immunization financing in the country, while calling for increased advocacy by pressure groups for the implementation of the NHAct.
“Since the 2016 budget did not capture the provision of the NHAct we will shout loud from now so that our 2017 budget will make provision for National Health Act which has made funding provision for immunization,” he said.
Adewole said the goal is to ensure that by 2020 Nigeria will be able to pay for full cost of Immunization as the implications of the country’s graduation from Donor Support is that Nigeria must pay for its vaccines.
He said: “It is also our national pride that we meet up with the demands and should be able to begin production of our vaccine so that we can bridge the immunization gap, every child in Africa must be fully immunized.”
He further called for increased advocacy through partnership with Civil Society Organizations to ensure that the ministry of finance understands the impact of Immunization which will prevent deaths, reduce poverty and improve the nation’s economy.