A manual of operation has been developed to tackle four priority areas in the National Health Act.
The areas are primary operations, governance ,Administration and financial management which are inline with the National Health Act
The Minster of Health,Professor Isaac Adewole stated this in Abuja at the second Legislative Summit on Universal Health Coverage and Nutrition,
The legislative network for universal health coverage was set up last year July to improve health financing towards achieving Universal Health Coverage in Nigeria.
The Network brought together legislators from the thirty-six states of the Federation , Speakers of the State Houses of Assembly, House Clerks, Chairs of Health and Appropriation for learning, knowledge and experience sharing on a wide variety of health issues as they relate to the legislature.
The as part its objectives is to achieve improved appropriation for the health sector by deepening the knowledge of lawmakers on economic, social, health and political benefits of improved funding towards UHC as well as to ensure prompt and adequate release of allocated funds by working with lawmakers to hold relevant central budget agencies accountable for fund releases
The Network will also ensure the timely passage of relevant high quality health laws, especially the legal framework of State Supported Health Insurance Schemes (SSHIS);
Since the launch, the Network has made progress to support health policy and reform efforts this is evidence with passage of the Appropriation Bill by the National Assembly and federal government of release of 1% Consolidate Revenue Fund.
In a presentation on Implementing the Basic Health Care Provision Fund, the Minister of Health,Professor Isaac Adewole said the BHCPF was to ensure monies are disbursed, managed and accounted for in a transparent manner.
“It will also ensure that funds flow from source (at the federal level) to service delivery points, creating performance incentives for providers, increasing service utilisation and health worker productivity, and monitoring service delivery, including improvements in service delivery readiness in line with accreditation standards and operating protocols.
“The BHCPF will complement ongoing efforts of states and local governments to mobilise resources for health. It is not intended to provide excuses to underfund or deprioritise funding for healthcare services,” the minster said.
“It guarantees an explicit package of services to be delivered at the facility level through the NHIS and State Health Insurance Agencies (SSHIAs), and operational budgets to facilities to improve the quality of service delivery based on a quality improvement plan with quantifiable outcome measures.
“The National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) and the State Primary Health Care Development Agency (SPHCDA) will assess on an annual basis the improvements in quality of care based on a set of metrics.”
According to the minster the manual willensure accountability and effective service delivery in the health sector.
The Senate Chairman,Senate Committee on Health,Senator Olanrewaju Tejuosho called for synergy between all arms of government in the actualization of the Abuja Declaration of 15% Health coverage.
Senator Tejuosho said the inclusion of the 1% means primary health centres would be more funded and more functional.
“It will also ensure basic drugs and commodities are available and accessible to Nigerians. More importantly, this will reduce mortality rates and high disease prevalence in the country.
“PHC is the closest to the communities, and lack of access for simple medical challenges has been the cause of many deaths in the country, especially in rural areas,” he said.
Tejuosho commended the Deputy. Governor of Kano State, Professor Hafiz Abubakar for an insightful presentation on malnutrition adding that the effect of malnutrition in the cognitive development of the Nigerian child has been worsen over the past 22 years.
“There is no way we can continue doing the same things every year, introducing budget allocations, which may not be release in totality, and expected to have a change in the health sector.”he added.
.The Chief of Party,Health Finance Governance,Dr Gafar Alawode who observed major improvement from the last summit called for proper implementation of
Legislative commitment towards the health sector.
“The Law Makers themselves at the end of this summit,how do they align their statutory functions of appropriation ,of accountability, of oversight to the key health policy and identify key target, is proper implementation of commitment,so that next year they will be able to tell us,this is where we are, this is the progress we have made of course there will be challenges”
He who said health insurance scheme was necessary to achieve the universal health coverage,
According to Dr Alawode, Nigeria has what it takes to be the centre of best practice and a model for best health system among equals. Showing unalloyed commitment towards UHC cannot be more auspicious than now.
The USAID Nigeria, Mission Director,Stephen Haykins who promised continues support to Nigeria said there was the need for increase advocacy ,dialogue towards the achievement of Universal Health Coverage.
The theme of the summit is the role of lawmakers in the implementation of 1% consolidated revenue fund and preparation for the mandatory contribution of Nigerians to Health Insurance.
In 2005, the World Health Assembly Resolution 58:33, urged countries to develop strategies that will ensure all people have access to needed healthcare services without the risk of financial ruin at the point of accessing care or after accessing care. As United Nations member state, Nigeria is signatory to the post 2015 SDGs and UHC agenda.