The Nigerian Senate has urged the Ministries of Finance and Budget to prioritise health matters in the release of annual budgetary allocation as part of measures to boost the maintenance of the federal government owned hospitals in the country.
It specifically charged the government to release the N308, 464,276.782 budgetary allocations to the nation’s health sector in the current fiscal year.
These resolutions which were reached on Tuesday, followed adoption of a motion on the “Inadequate maintenance of Federal Government Owned Hospitals,” sponsored by Senator Monsurat Sunmonu.
Other resolutions reached by the Senate included charging the Ministry of Health to ensure efficiency in health care services, and maintaining high standards of health care delivery services within the country through periodic training, hospital inspections among others.
It also mandated the Senate Committee on Health to probe, or request the audit of federal government owned hospitals, and also charged all federal government-owned hospitals to provide quality management through continuous evaluations.
According to Senator Summonu, the provision of timely and adequate medical attention to patients can save the lives of those who are in need of medical care and is the first step in ensuring that the healthcare sector attains the desired standard in boosting the faith of Nigerians.
She lamented that despite Nigeria’s strategic position in Africa, the country is greatly under-served in the healthcare sphere and the healthcare sector has suffered several downfalls, particularly due to inadequate health facilities (health centres, personnel, and medical equipment) as well as incessant strike actions.
“At these times, government-owned hospitals are not able to provide basic medicine or drugs such as Paracetamol Tablets while malfunctioning medical equipment such as x-ray machine, oxygen, syringes, and most importantly, lack of adequate electricity in the clinics have become the order of the day”, she stated.
Senator Sunmonu, therefore, affirmed that in order to improve the future of healthcare delivery in Nigeria, improving the medical and clinical training system for post-graduate students is pertinent.
She stressed the need to sensitise Nigerian hospitals to know how expensive life is and to purge every sector of corruption in order to help move the country forward.
Senator Ali Wakili representing Bauchi South Constituency commended President Muhammadu Buhari for his commitment to quality health care services by releasing $1.5million to every state and the Federal Capital Territory, FCT.
He called for creating functional primary health care centres in each ward across every state so as to reverse the poor health indices in the country.